First wild wolf pups born in Colorado in 80 years

Individual gray wolves, like this one spotted in 2019, have occasionally wandered into Colorado. Now, a pair has given birth to pups, the first wild wolf pups born in the state since the 1940s.
Credit: Colorado Parks and Wildlife

As Colorado wildlife officials prepare to reintroduce wolves to the state, the canids seem to be taking on the job themselves. A pair of gray wolves (Canis lupus) that wandered into the state has produced a litter — the first wild wolf pups born in Colorado since wolves were extirpated in the 1940s.

Wildlife biologists had been tracking the pair in Jackson County, near the Wyoming border. “Colorado Parks and Wildlife personnel, observing the den site from about two miles away, recorded multiple sightings this month of the two adults with at least three pups, although there could be more since there are usually four to six pups in a wolf litter,” the New York Times reports.

The pups’ arrival comes after Colorado voters approved a ballot measure to reintroduce gray wolves to the state.

Read more from the New York Times.