Gray Wolf Seen in Grand Canyon for the First Time Since 1940s

gray-wolf-grand-canyon

A gray wolf was recently photographed on the north rim of the Grand Canyon in Arizona in what would be the first wolf sighting in the national park since the last one was killed there in the 1940s, conservation groups said on Thursday.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service was sending a team to try to capture the animal in question in order to verify the sighting, though federal biologists are assuming that it is a wolf unless otherwise determined, a spokeswoman said.

The National Park Service also is looking into the authenticity of the photos in conjunction with the Fish and Wildlife Service, Park Service spokeswoman Alexandra Picavet said.

Several photos of the animal were taken over the weekend by a Grand Canyon park visitor who shared them with conservation activists and park staff, according to the Center for Biological Diversity, which made the findings public.

Officials for the center and Fish and Wildlife said the animal appeared to be wearing an inactive radio collar.

A note accompanying images viewed by Reuters said two wolf biologists and “an experienced wolf observer” who reviewed the photos concluded they “appear to depict a radio-collared northern Rocky mountain gray wolf.”

Any wolf roaming the Grand Canyon, in north-central Arizona, would be protected under the U.S. Endangered Species Act.

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SOURCE: Reuters
Laura Zuckerman

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