Siskiyou County, CA – For the first time in almost a century, a gray wolf pack was spotted in Northern California. Researchers observed two adult wolves and five pups in Siskiyou County as confirmed by State officials. The new pack of wolves has been called “Shasta Pack” for their proximity to the Cascades Volcano.
It’s been over 90 years since California had even a single wild wolf residing in the region. The adult wolves from the new pack are believed to come from Oregon. However, wildlife officials still have to determine if they are descended from the one wolf that wandered into California in 2011.
During that year, a 2 and a half year old male gray wolf named OR7 left its pack in northeastern Oregon and, after traveling hundreds of miles, entered California in December 2011. OR7 then returned to Oregon, found a mate, and established a pack.
Nevertheless, his presence in California prompted members of the public to petition the California Fish and Game Commission to list the gray wolf as endangered under the California Endangered Species Act (CESA). In June 2014, the Commission voted to list gray wolves as endangered animals under the CESA. The wolves are also listed as endangered in California under the Federal Endangered Species Act of 1973.
“This news is exciting for California. We knew wolves would eventually return home to the state and it appears now is the time,” said Charlton H. Bonham, California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) Director.
As for now, it seems all those efforts are bringing fauna back to their usual habitats.