ANIMAL: Red Wolf Canis rufus Type of Animal: Canine Habitat: Forests, swamps, coastal prairies, woodlands, wetlands, bushlands, scrub forest, mountainous areas Location(s): N.E. N. Carolina. Historically, most of S.E. U.S. N. to Ohio River Valley/C. Pennsylvania & W. to C. Texas & S.E. Missouri. Appearance: Reddish/dark gray/brownish coloration w/ long tail, smaller than gray wolf/larger than coyote, black nose, rufous ears, some black on back. Food/Diet: Rabbits, hares, rodents, pigs, otters, foxes, goats, sheep, coyote pups, bear cubs, deer, domestic alpacas/llamas, insects, berries, birds, carrion, raccoons, cattle, domestic foals, domestic dogs, domestic/feral cats, bobcats, turtles Status in Wild: Critically Endangered Conservation: Breeding in zoos & wildlife parks. Reintroduction programs into N.E. N. Carolina. Lifestyle: Family packs of monogamous alpha pair w/ 1-2 litters of pups, 4-7 pups in litter. Sometimes 1-3 subordinates in pack, typically siblings of alpha pair (males brothers of alpha male & females sisters of alpha female). Additional Info: Called: Male-Dog Female-Bitch Young-Pup Group-Pack Weight: Male-50-60 lbs Female-44-50 lbs Young-10 lbs Gestation: 2 months Life Span: 8-10 years in wild, 12-14 years in captivity Height: Male-1.3 ft Female-1.25 ft Body Length: Male-4.6 ft Female-4.3 ft Tail Length: 0.83-1.16 ft Only predators of adults are alligators. Coyotes & bears prey on pups. Critically endangered due to persecution as livestock/pet killer, climate change, habitat loss, deforestation, disease, deaths from motor vehicles, hunting for fur, & interbreeding w/ coyotes. Back in 1980, fewer than 20 red wolves rounded up by U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service for captive breeding. As of 2017, approximately 250 red wolves reside at 43 institutions in N. America. Thanks to diligent efforts of zoos/conservation centers, at least 100 red wolves have been successfully reintroduced into Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge & Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge in N.E. N. Carolina. However, they’re still critically endangered. More of these wolves are in N. American facilities than in wild. Some captive-born red wolf pups have been placed w/ wild parents & their pups in method known as “cross-fostering.” It has helped reintroduction efforts. Like other canines, they mark territory w/ urine. Most active at dusk & dawn. More active during nighttime rather than daytime. Reintroduction attempt into Great Smoky Mountains National Park from 1992-1998 was cancelled due to diseases contracted from domestic dogs & inability of packs to establish territories. Howling also used to proclaim territory. Sexually mature at 1 year old. Fun Fact(s): Known to be very shy & elusive in the wild.