Fewer Than 100 Red Wolves Exist, and Now They’re Being Killed

Red wolves are very endangered in the U.S. and there are fewer than 100 of them left in the wild. They are a completely separate species of wolf from the Gray wolf. By the 1960s they were almost extinct due to destruction of their habitat and also widespread predator control programs. They were actually declared extinct in the wild in 1980.

There were however still Red wolves in captive breeding programs and in 1987 these wolves were released into the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge in North Carolina. This is the only state that these rare wolves live in currently. Since their reintroduction, their territory has been expanded to 1.7 million acres which covers five counties now in northeast North Carolina.

Recently however, the Red wolves come under attack again and three have been killed within the last 6 months. This has happened in conjunction with the recent passing of North Carolina’s Wildlife Resources Commission new rule this spring, where night hunting was allowed for coyotes. Their argument was that night hunting would allow for better predator control.

The problem is that the hunting is allowed in the same areas where the Red wolves live and they tend to look more like coyotes than they do the Gray wolf. The Red Wolf Coalition, Defenders of Wildlife, the Animal Welfare Institute and the Southern Environmental Law Center filed a lawsuit seeking an injunction against spotlight hunting of coyotes at night because they believe the similar appearance of red wolves has lead to confusion. They are also calling for hunting in the Red wolf recovery area to be stopped completely.

According to Derb Carter, a senior attorney at the Southern Environmental Law Center who represents the above groups, “We hope that the commission will take necessary measures to avoid killing of red wolves. The killing of an endangered red wolf just over a month since the commission allowed spotlight hunting of coyotes at night is a clear signal that the rule is a danger to wild red wolves. We’ve asked the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to confirm reports that additional wolves have been shot since the rule went into effect.”

As for the person or persons that have killed the three wolves, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and private organizations are offering a reward of up to $8,000 for information leading to the conviction for killing each of the radio collared wolves. Under the law, illegally killing one of these wolves can result in one year in prison and a $100,000 fine. Please take a minute to sign the petition below.


Responses to "Highly endangered Red wolves are being illegally killed (Petition)"

  1. Linda Ascenzi says:

    Please fight to stop the killing of "Red Wolves" or any Wolves for that matter....They have a right to live just as you do. Please just stop and consider it for a moment. What would planet Earth be like without Wolves?

  2. Shelley says:

    These are such beautiful and graceful animals. it is heartbreaking knowing that they are in the danger zone and there isn't a lot we can do but pray. We have to get laws in place that govern illegal kills of wolves or any wildlife. The question is how. What can we do? I will continue to fight for justice for our wildlife, I just wish there was more I could do.

  3. Anonymous says:

    What beautiful and sacred animals wolves are, they have family units that are on par to human beings.... when the fragile creatures are extinct it will be too late , learn to live in harmony with wild life, work with it not against it!! Look into your conscious and ask what is the right thing to do? For your grand children..... Work together for the great of all... The bigger picture................ Sylvia in Australia

  4. Anonymous says:

    This world is so fucked! :-(((

  5. Anonymous says:

    The Native American culture considers wolves to be our brothers. How brutal are the hunters and trappers. They need to feel the pain they inflict on these noble beings. These white men need more respect for ALL of the creatures of the Earth. The Creator put them here for a reason.

  6. Anonymous says:

    Please help save these beautiful creatures!
    Those people who kill wolves should be hunted and killed,they should feel the same pain they inflict on the wolves!!!!

  7. Anonymous says:

    where do you sign,save the red wolves...I've always loved wolves,Minnesota has a wolf kill going on...I'm against killing our wolves of any kind or color.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Please fight to stop the killing of "Red Wolves" or any Wolves for that matter....They have a right to live just as you do. Please just stop and consider it for a moment. What would planet Earth be like without Wolves? safe the world!!!

  9. Anonymous says:

    Wolves have as much right to live in peace as we do, they were here before us & some moronic people want to make sure that they don't survive for much longer. They are sacred & should be protected everywhere.

  10. Unknown says:

    please help stop the killing of all the wolves. They deserve to live in this world just as any other animal does, including man.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Please let us all stand up and speak out for the Red Wolves. They have a RIGHT to LIFE... Same as evryone else, from humanity to the smallest creature. I we don't start doing something NOW, it will be too late!

  12. Sarah Stroschein says:

    Alright, these actions of killing ALL wolves is ridiculous! THEY ARE NOT BAD! LEAVE THEM ALONE!!!! They have as much right to live as we human beings do. We are animals ourselves.

  13. Christine from Port Talbot says:

    Wolves are beautiful noble animals, it is disgraceful to kill them. xx

  14. Anonymous says:


  15. Anonymous says:

    the slaughtering of our wolves is inhumane and evil!! all they are trying to do is survive!! they should be free w/o fear of humans!!! leave our wolves alone!!

  16. nick says:

    So leave then!!

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