As we reported on Saturday, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and members of Congress heard all of us loud and clear and decided to spare the Fox Mountain Pack Mexican gray wolf mother-of-five from shooting, and instead place her in captivity permanently.
Fortunately, she has not yet been trapped and is still with her family. Now is the time to make yet more phone calls to keep this family intact and avoid an unnecessary and destructive removal.
The Fox Mountain Pack consists of the targeted alpha female, her loyal mate the alpha male, four pups born this spring and one surviving pup from last year.
Wolves are social animals who rely on family members in hunting and pup rearing. Trapping or darting this wolf, and removing her forever, would disrupt the pack as well as bring us back to the policy of scapegoating wolves who occasionally prey on livestock — even when, as in this instance, the stock-owner is reimbursed.
At last count, just 58 wolves including six breeding pairs survived in the wild. In addition to the 12 wolves shot by the government thus far since reintroduction in 1998, 18 were killed as a consequence of capture, and up to 23 remain in captivity indefinitely; at least nine others have died of age-related ailments years after their capture.
The Fish and Wildlife Service is rightfully concerned that the two breeding adults of the Fox Mountain pack are cousins. The solution to the problem of two closely related animals breeding is obvious-the Service must release many new wolves to the wild. That way the pack’s pups, when they grow up, will be able to find unrelated mates.
The reason these pups’ parents are cousins may be related to the fact that not a single new wolf has been released from the captive-breeding pool since November 2008.
Now is the time to once again help this lobo family and not let federal bureaucrats – set back Mexican gray wolf recovery as they have done numerous times before.
Thank you for your valuable time. The Fox Mountain Pack would thank you too, if they could.
Call the White House, the US Fish and Wildlife Service, and your members of congress and tell them the Fox Mountain alpha female should be left in the wild with her family and the USFWS should focus on releasing new wolves.
White House number: 202-456-1111
USFWS in Washington, DC Public number: 1-800-344-9453
USFWS Southwest Regional Office External Affairs Office: 505-248-6911 (other numbers are 505-761-4748 or 505-363-2797)
Your Congressional representatives (click here to find numbers)
Your Senators (click here to find numbers)
Phone calls usually carry more weight than emails, but if you absolutely can’t call, here are email contacts:
White House https://www.whitehouse.gov/contact/
USFWS Southwest Regional Director Benjamin Tuggle RDTuggle@fws.gov or Benjamin_Tuggle@fws.gov
USFWS Acting Southwest Regional Director Joy Nicholopoulos Joy_Nicholopoulos@fws.gov
Your Congressional representatives (click here to find emails)
Your Senators (click here to find emails)
Senator Udall: http://www.tomudall.senate.gov/?p=contact
Senator Bingaman: http://www.bingaman.senate.gov/contact/types/email-issue.cfm
Letters to the editor to papers that published articles on this development will also help. Click here for letter writing information.
Once you’ve acted, we’d appreciate an email to let us know: email@example.com