The Arizona Game and Fish Department joined forces with the US Fish and Wildlife Service and successfully released a male Mexican wolf into the wilderness of the Apache National Forest. The wolf's code is M1133.
The idea behind the rease was to replace the alpha male of the Bluestem pack that was killed in 2012. The alpha female has not taken another mate since the death of her male. Hopefully she will find this newcomer attractive enough to shack up and increase the Bluestem pack with another litter. We hope so.
Reports are that M1133 is doing well despite the fact that he was released somewhat controversially. He was not released from a holding pen as was previously the custom. He was carted in a crate to the releasing site by snowmobile and promptly released.
TWA questions this way of releasing a wolf that was not aclimatized to its new environment. So far everything seems to be going well and we hope the experiment will be successful.
Pic by Alan Lacy