Colorado has released 10 gray wolves into the wilderness. The predator was eradicated from the state in the 1940s. – DNyuz

Colorado has released 10 gray wolves into the wilderness. The predator was eradicated from the state in the 1940s.

Colorado wildlife officials have now released 10 gray wolves — four males and six females — as part of a voter-backed effort to reintroduce the predator to the state’s wilderness after roughly 80 years.

Wolves were eradicated from Colorado in the 1940s, according to Colorado’s Wolf Restoration and Management Plan. The 10 wolves reintroduced this month were released onto state-owned land in Grand County and Summit County.

The goal is “to recover and maintain a viable, self-sustaining wolf population in Colorado while balancing the need to manage interactions between wolves, people, and livestock,” Colorado Parks and Wildlife said in a statement.

The 10 wolves hail from Oregon and have been outfitted with satellite GPS collars to track their movements and survival. Ultimately some 30 to 50 wolves will be introduced to Colorado over a three- to five-year timeframe.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife said Friday that five more wolves will be released by mid-March.

On Monday Dec. 18, we released 5 wolves in Grand County & since then, we have released 5 more in Summit/Grand counties bringing our total released wolves in Colorado to 10 — 4 males and 6 females.We will continue working to reintroduce 15 wolves total by mid-March 2024. pic.twitter.com/V2zZuHpUUT

— Colorado Parks and Wildlife (@COParksWildlife) December 23, 2023

The reintroduction has been controversial in Colorado — though voters narrowly approved the plan on a ballot initiative, ranchers have hotly opposed the efforts and tried to sue to delay the releases. A federal judge denied their request earlier this month, according to the Associated Press.

To address the livestock industry’s concerns, Colorado Parks and Wildlife said it has implemented a compensation program and will reimburse ranchers up to $15,000 for the death or injury of livestock caused by the wolves.

“Colorado Parks and Wildlife staff will conserve and manage wolves in concert with the rest of our state’s native wildlife,” the agency said in its statement. “That will involve active management to address conflicts between wolves, people, livestock, and other wildlife species.”

The post Colorado has released 10 gray wolves into the wilderness. The predator was eradicated from the state in the 1940s. appeared first on Business Insider.

Loading...