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Fifth Red Wolf Killed by Vehicle Collision

 

A red wolf was killed by a vehicle collision in June—the fifth red wolf road mortality in less than a year. Red wolf 2444M was a new father of five pups who was tragically struck by a vehicle along Highway 64 near Buffalo Town Road.

2444M was born in captivity at the Endangered Wolf Center in Missouri in 2022. Last December, he was transferred to the Red Wolf Recovery Area and placed in acclimation pen with a wild female red wolf (2413F).  They successfully bred, and 2413F gave birth to five pups in May. The wolves and pups were released from the acclimation pen in late May and had settled a few miles away. However, on June 5, 2444M was killed by a vehicle strike.

Vehicle collisions are the leading cause of mortality for red wolves since 2020. More than 20% of the red wolf population has been killed by vehicle strikes.

Last month, News and Observer reporter Adam Wagner published a powerful feature about red wolves and road mortality at this link here.

At least 20% of all remaining wild red wolves have died on roads in the past year. All of the red wolf deaths have occurred on or near Highway 64, which passes through the heart of Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge.

As Wildlands Network Chief Scientist Ron Sutherland states in the story, ” With the right road crossing structures and fencing to guide the wolves to those structures, we could seal up US 64 and keep red wolves safe at Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge.

 

 

 

 

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