Red Wolves

$1,725 Raised * $1,000 Goal
Current Project

Red Wolf Survival Plan

The Akron Zoo
The Akron Zoo has partnered with the Red Wolf Species Survival Plan and the Red Wolf Coalition to protect the reintroduced Red Wolf. By 1980 the Red Wolf was declared extinct in the wild after the last remaining wolves were gathered to start a breeding program. By 1987 enough wolves were produced to launch the first reintroduction of the species to the wild on 1.7 million acres of protected lands in North Carolina. As of 2010 there are about 130 wild Red Wolves inhabiting these lands. The species remains critically endangered, and requires both field monitoring and educational outreach to the areas surrounding the reintroduction site to avoid conflict with humans. The first Red Wolf to be lost to illegal hunting in 2014 occurred on January 7th, and nine Red Wolves were lost to hunting in 2013. The educational outreach programs supported by the Akron Zoo are very important to reach those who live in the reintroduction area.

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Red wolves are characterized by their nocturnal nature, primarily carnivorous diets, vocalizations (including howling), and reddish coats.

Morphologically, red wolves are classified midway between gray wolves and coyotes. The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species identifies red wolves as critically endangered. The primary threat to the species in the wild is hybridization with Coyotes.

Historically, red wolves were native to the south-eastern United States. Today, they only live in eastern North Carolina as a reintroduced population.