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Offspring of California’s Shasta wolf pack spotted in Nevada

Video: Siskiyou County’s wolf pups at play

State wildlife officials released this video showing five wolf pups in Siskiyou County frolicking this summer in a meadow. Video from December 2015.
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State wildlife officials released this video showing five wolf pups in Siskiyou County frolicking this summer in a meadow. Video from December 2015.

A male wolf identified as an offspring of California's Shasta pack has made its way to northwest Nevada.

The wolf was spotted in early November near Fox Mountain, just west of the Black Rock Desert and about 20 miles from the California state line, Amaroq Weiss, west coast wolf organizer for the Center for Biological Diversity, said in an email Friday. Nevada’s state wildlife agency was able to collect scat and send it for DNA testing. The results recently came back, confirming that it was a male offspring of the Shasta pack, Weiss said.

Wildlife advocates expressed concern earlier this month that seven gray wolves, the first wolf pack to take up residence in California in nearly a century, had not been seen since May 2016. The family, known as the Shasta pack, had disappeared from southeastern Siskiyou County.

Confirmation that an offspring of the pack had been sighted in Nevada was encouraging to those eager to see wolves make a comeback on the West Coast.

“They made it to California from Oregon through natural dispersal, and now California’s wolves are continuing this amazing saga by having one of our own disperse to Nevada,” Weiss said in the email.

“The fact that wolves can make these journeys and have made any kid of a comeback at all, after being almost entirely eradicated throughout the lower 48 United States, is due to the protections afforded them under the federal Endangered Species Act,” she said. “Federal and state protections for imperiled species like wolves make all the difference in the world.”

Cathy Locke: 916-321-5287, @lockecathy

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