Tuesday, February 7, 2012
|A Michigan gray wolf - photo by Cheanne Chellis|
(NOT California Wolf OR7)
California has 37 million people, five million cows, 500,000 sheep, 30,000 black bears, 5,000 mountain lions — and one wild wolf. The wolf, officially known as OR7 is a new immigrant from Oregon that arrived in the Golden State the old fashion way.
It walked there.
California Dept of Fish and Game states: "The male wolf known as “OR7” was born in northeastern Oregon in spring 2009. It weighed approximately 90 pounds when collared with a radio transmitter by Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife (ODFW) in February 2011. It is referred to by biologists as OR7 because it was the seventh wolf radio-collared in Oregon. Its collar transmits location information to satellites daily and is expected to continue to function until at least 2013"
He left his pack in northeast Oregon and began a 1,000 mile wandering trek across the high desert of eastern Oregon and the rugged Cascade Mountains before heading south and crossing into California on December 28th coming within a few miles of the spot the last wild wolf was trapped in California back in 1924. Much has changed. The moment this gray wolf crossed the state line he became fully protected by the federal endangered species act administered by the US. Fish and Wildlife Service. The wolf's apparent lovelorn trek is being monitored and mapped by Federal and State agencies as he explores his new land of opportunity.
And with a wolf in California there is controversy brewing that already mirrors the thoughts of humans who despise Michigan wolves. For those that claim wolves will kill "their deer" I say wolves have more right to the deer than a hunter does and just as much right to wait for a kill opportunity at a deer hunter's bait pile as the hunter.
Wolves are free-roaming predators that keep the wild in wildlife and establish an equilibrium.
That is the way of the wolf.
Monitor OR7 wanderings on Facebook at: California WolfADDENDUM: I am saddened and angered to add this comment on the evening of Feb 10.
On Twitter at: CaliforniaWolf
I have just learned from Oregon Dept of Fish and Wildlife that OR7's
pack brother wolf, OR9 has been shot and killed by a trophy "hunter" in Idaho.