Endangered Gray Wolf in California Gives Birth to Largest Litter in 100 Years

Wolf pups
Wolf pups in Northern California.California Department of Fish and Wildlife

Good news arrived for California's endangered gray wolves.

It's a litter of eight pups!

Congratulations to two endangered gray wolves in California on the birth of eight pups, the largest litter in 100 years, according to the state's Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The wolves were actually delivered in the spring, but were only recently confirmed by the department. Their arrival signals an amazing rebirth for the animals, which were nearly wiped out in California more than a century ago. 

“This is a really great sign of the health of wolves,” said Amaroq Weiss, a biologist who works as an advocate for the Center for Biological Diversity. A typical litter is usually five or six pups, she said. 

“The fact that eight pups have made it this far into the year is really exciting,” Weiss added.

Wolves were hunted to near-extinction in California. They were ordered protected in the 1970s under the Endangered Species Act. They were slowly moved into Yellowstone in Wyoming and then the wolves headed out on their own.

They migrated into Northern California, where dense forests and plentiful deer roam. Beginning in about 2015, more and more cases of wolves entering the state were confirmed by wildlife officials.

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