In June, federal officials issued a report on the decline of the wild Mexican wolf population to a dangerous low of only 42 at the end of 2009.
According to the report, illegal wolf killings are the leading cause of death for Mexican gray wolves. Between 1998 and June 2009, 31 Mexican gray wolves were killed illegally. Another 47 mysteriously disappeared.
Tragically, three more highly endangered Mexican gray wolves, two of whom were the alpha males of their packs, were found dead in the wild in the past few weeks.
The alpha male of the Hawk’s Nest Pack was shot to death in eastern Arizona, leaving his mate to raise dependent pups without him. The alpha male of the San Mateo Pack was found dead under suspicious circumstances in New Mexico. Both deaths are under investigation. A younger male wolf from the Hawk’s Nest Pack was also confirmed to have been shot.
The collared alpha male of a third pack, the Paradise pack that roamed the Fort Apache Reservation in Arizona, also has been missing since mid-April.
Last year, the Hawk’s Nest and Paradise packs were the only packs that gave birth to at least two pups that survived until the end of the year.
The Mexican gray wolf is one of the most endangered animals in the world. With so few Mexican gray wolves remaining in the wild, every wolf — especially the alpha males — is crucial to the survival of the species.
Please help. Mexican wolf recovery can only succeed through the survival of intact Mexican wolf families in the wild.
The officials responsible for wolf recovery must act immediately to stop these criminal killings and increase the number of Mexican wolves in the wild!
PLEASE WRITE TO SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR KEN SALAZAR and tell him the Fish and Wildlife Service must take these actions immediately and aggressively to recover Mexican wolves from the brink of extinction:
* Increase law enforcement to bring the criminals killing wolves to justice and stop more killings from happening. USFWS law enforcement needs more help to protect these packs of wolves. To date, 34 Mexican wolves have been killed illegally but there have been only two prosecutions — this is an outrage.
* Take back all radio telemetry receivers issued to enable people outside the recovery program to track wolves. These receivers make radio collared wolves vulnerable to those who oppose their existence. Only project personnel and some scientists should have these receivers.
* Release the captive Mexican wolf family of eight into Arizona as soon as possible. New releases of Mexican wolves will increase wolf numbers and strengthen the wild population’s genetic viability. A healthy, captive Mexican wolf family, including mom, dad, five pups, and a yearling, is ready to be released into the wild.
* Expedite the Environmental Assessment (EA) on direct releases into New Mexico to allow more releases in 2011. Right now, Mexican wolves can only be released into Arizona from captivity. The Fish and Wildlife Service should move forward quickly with an EA to allow wolves to be released from captivity directly into New Mexico as well.
* Request Mexican Gray Wolf Species Survival Plan cooperation in preparing more wolves for release in 2011. The SSP is a binational captive breeding program between the U.S. and Mexico whose primary purpose is to raise wolves for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for reintroduction purposes. This captive population is the sole source of Mexican wolves available to re-establish the species in the wild and is imperative to the success of the Blue Range Mexican wolf reintroduction project and any additional potential reintroduction areas that may be identified in the future.
Send your letter to:
U.S. Secretary of the Interior
1849 C. Street, NW
Washington, DC 20240
And copy it to your members of Congress:
Arizona Members of Congress
Senator John McCain: http://mccain.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.ContactForm
Senator Jon Kyl: http://kyl.senate.gov/contact.cfm
Congressman Trent Franks: https://franks.house.gov/contacts/new
Congressman John Shadegg: http://www.house.gov/formshadegg/emailtemplate.htm
Congressman Ed Pastor: http://www.house.gov/writerep/
Congressman Harry Mitchell: https://forms.house.gov/mitchell/webforms/issue_subscribe.htm
Congressman Jeff Flake: http://www.house.gov/writerep/
Congressman Raul Grijalva: http://grijalva.house.gov/?sectionid=49§iontree=249
Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords: https://giffordsforms.house.gov/contact/email.shtml
Congresswoman Ann Kirkpatrick: https://forms.house.gov/kirkpatrick/dc-contact-form.shtml
New Mexico members of Congress:
Senator Jeff Bingaman: http://bingaman.senate.gov/contact/types/email-issue.cfm
Senator Tom Udall: http://tomudall.senate.gov/?p=contact
Congressman Martin Heinrich: https://forms.house.gov/heinrich/contact-form.shtml
Congressman Ben Lujan: https://forms.house.gov/lujan/contact-form.shtml
Congressman Harry Teague: http://forms.house.gov/teague/webforms/issue_subscribe.htm
YOU CAN ALSO HELP BY:
Printing and distributing reward posters
A reward of up to $50,000 is offered for information leading to arrest and conviction of anyone illegally killing a Mexican wolf. You can read and print out copies of the reward poster to put up Here.
Writing letters to the editor
Letters to the editor are widely read and are seen by decisionmakers as a reflection of majority public opinion. Tips and editorial contacts are Here.
Spreading the word to your friends and family
Sharing this information with the people you know is one of the most effective actions you can take. In addition to telling them about the dire situation the wolves are in, you can also:
* Email them this action alert and ask them to write a letter.
* Recommend our website: www.mexicanwolves.org
* Invite them to visit our Facebook page.
Wolves exist in the wild because of the actions of people like you who understand their importance to the balance of nature. Without these kinds of actions, Mexican wolves would never have been reintroduced in the first place.
Because of public pressure and organized support for lobos, the Fish and Wildlife has not killed or removed wolves from the wild for depredations since the beginning of 2008, a big improvement over their actions in 2007, when they removed several entire packs. Your actions make a real difference -Thank you!