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Red wolves once roamed across the southeastern United States. Today, they are making their last stand in the scrub forests of eastern North Carolina. One of the leading causes of red wolf deaths is gun-shot mortality, including from hunters who mistake the small wolves for coyotes.
Thanks to legal action filed by Defenders and other groups, red wolves won a temporary reprieve, and coyote hunting has been halted in wolf territory. But now, FWS is under increased pressure from anti-wolf groups to walk away from recovery efforts making it more important than ever for Americans to speak out in support of this critically endangered population.
Tell FWS to stand up for red wolves and continue recovery efforts for this critically endangered wolf!
Dear Director Ashe,
As a supporter of Defenders of Wildlife and someone who cares deeply about wolves, I'm writing today urging you to step up and continue red wolf recovery efforts in North Carolina.
Recently, Defenders and its allies were able to secure a preliminary injunction halting coyote hunting in the designated Red Wolf Recovery Area; however, this is only one of the factors necessary to ensuring the recovery and survival of red wolves.
The red wolf once ranged throughout the eastern and south central United States. However, intensive predator control programs and the degradation and alteration of the species' habitat had greatly reduced its numbers by the early 20th century. Designated as an endangered species in 1967, the red wolf was declared extinct in the wild in 1980. In 1987, an experimental population of red wolves was reintroduced into eastern North Carolina.
Today, only 90-110 wild red wolves remain in North Carolina — the only place they exist in the wild. Red wolf recovery efforts must not only be maintained, but also expanded if the species is to survive in the wild.
It is vital that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service continue to stand behind and fully fund the Red Wolf Recovery Program; we can't allow these wolves to be exterminated once again from their native lands.
I'm urging you to stand strong and not abandon the recovery efforts that are vital to the existence of this species.
Thank you for your consideration.