Blue Ocean Network has been following the extraordinary international efforts to save the Vaquita, the critically endangered porpoise barely holding on in the northern waters of the Sea of Cortez, see our latest blog: Vaquita Rescue Update!

But what if in North Carolina here is another equally iconic species that is also critically endangered and that a Republican led congress has determined is not worth the effort.


Like the Vaquita the Red Wolf is on the brink of extinction.

red wolf endangered Valerie flickr

The red wolf exists wild in North Carolina in numbers similar to those of the vaquita in the Sea of Cortez, somewhere around 45 individuals and other similarities exist between the two species. The vaquita is the world’s most endangered marine mammal, while the red wolf is the world’s most endangered canid and is beloved by North Carolinians who overwhelmingly support recovery efforts.  In the Senate, however, Republicans are trying to “end the recovery program and declare the Red Wolf extinct” said Perrin de Jong of the Center for Biological Diversity. (photo – Valerie/flickr)

“Senate Republicans are trying to hammer a final nail in the coffin of the struggling red wolf recovery program. It is morally reprehensible for Senator Murkowski and her committee to push for the extinction of North Carolina’s most treasured wild predator. Instead of giving up on the red wolf, Congress should fund recovery efforts, something lawmakers have cynically blocked time and time again.”


Red Wolf Recovery Is Possible!

Efforts over a decade ago led to the population of the endangered wolf peaking at 130 individuals. More recently, however, because of illegal hunting and lax enforcement, the population in the wild has now fallen to less than 45.

“The red wolf is an iconic, local species that is part of North Carolina history,” said de Jong. “It’s not too late to save these wolves from extinction.” A final hope may lie in the 200 red wolves that are held in captive-breeding programs.

vaquita rescue update vaquitacpr croppedThe international teams involved in trying to save the vaquita porpoise from extinction are spending millions and are engaged in a very difficult maneuver to collect the marine mammals and hold them in protected sanctuaries where they will have an opportunity to breed, recover and eventually be returned to the wild.

In contrast, Republicans seem unwilling to budget a much smaller amount for the red wolf recovery effort. Is the red wolf going to be one of the first casualties of the new Republican tax plan?

By Robert Frerck, Blue Ocean Network


See These Related Blue Ocean Posts on the Vaquita and other Endangered Species:

China, Mexico and U.S. join in effort to save the Vaquita
International Save The Vaquita Day
Chinese appetite for totoaba fish bladder kills off rare porpoise
What does the US Navy, Dolphins and Vaquitas Have in Common
Illegal Trafficking of Wildlife: What You Need To Know!
Saving the Iconic and Endangered Nassau Grouper
World Sea Turtle Day: Turtles Face Environmental and Political Threats
Shark-A-Thon: Latest News & Gossip on Sharks


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