Mexican Gray Wolf Population On The Rise

January 31, 2014

The Mexican gray wolf population in New Mexico and Arizona is on the rise.

Results of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's annual survey, released Friday, show there are at least 83 of the endangered predators in the two states, marking the fourth year in a row the population has increased.

Fish and Wildlife Service Regional Director Benjamin Tuggle says the population is at an all-time high. In fact, it has nearly doubled from a previous high of 42 in 2009. A subspecies of the gray wolf, the Mexican gray wolf, was added to the federal endangered species list in 1976.

Biologists have been working to return the wolves to the Southwest since 1998, but the effort has been hampered by everything from politics to the illegal killing of wolves.