More Mexican Gray Wolves to Be Released in the Wild! At last count, there were approximately 110 Mexican gray wolves living in the wild in the southwest. To increase the population’s genetic diversity and ensure this species’ continued recovery, more wolves need to be released. So, we were highly disappointed earlier this fall when the New Mexico Game and Fish Commission voted unanimously not to allow the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to release captive-bred lobos in the wolves’ designated recovery area in New Mexico. Tens of thousands of you joined us in encouraging the Service to continue with its plans to release more wolves, since that is an essential component to helping the species recover. And it looks like the Service heard you! This week the Service announced it will use its authority under the Endangered Species Act to bypass the Commission’s decision and release more wolves anyway! The word is that the Service will release about 10 Mexican gray wolves into the wilds of southwestern New Mexico. This is wonderful news for this population of highly imperiled lobos and certainly a victory worth celebrating! A big thank you to everyone who spoke up for Mexican gray wolves and encouraged the Service to do the right thing.
The Latest on Oregon’s Wolves: The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission last week announced they will wait until November to evaluate what level of state protection is warranted as wolves continue to recover in Oregon. While we respect the commission’s need to evaluate the status of wolves in the state, we have urged it to avoid removing protections now that would stop or slow wolf recovery in western Oregon. If the commission makes any changes at all, we have urged them to consider only downlisting the species from endangered to threatened. This would enable wolves to continue to receive the vital state protections they need, while acknowledging that wolf numbers in eastern Oregon have improved through a model of cooperation, conservation, and coexistence. If you are an Oregon resident and wish to comment, please send an email before November 9, 2015 to firstname.lastname@example.org.