Colorado this week announced the birth of its first pack of gray wolves in 80 years on its soil, a major milestone in efforts to bring the species back to this western state. In early June, both a biologist and a resource management worker reported observing two previously identified wolves, John and Jane, with three cubs from a distance.
The litter usually has four to six cubs, so other newly born wolves may not have been seen yet. “Colorado is now home to our first wolves since the 1940sColorado Governor Jared Polis said in a statement Wednesday, calling for the move.HistoricalLast year, residents of that state voted in favor of a law to bring back these predators by 2023.
«We continue to actively monitor the den, taking great care not to inadvertently jeopardize the survival of these youngsters.Biologist Libby Miller said: “Our main concern is not to disturb them.About 250,000 wolves inhabited the country before European settlers carried out extermination campaigns during the 20th century. Today there are about 6000 gray wolfs spread across 48 states. Only a thousand remained when the United States declared it a protected species in the late 1970s.
Despite this good news from Colorado, environmental groups remain deeply concerned about the species’ future, after former US President Donald Trump stripped it of some federal protections last year, exposing it while hunting. In March, hunters in Wisconsin killed 216 wolves in three days, twice the allowable number, and nearly 20% of the state’s population.