West Obsessed: Genetics and the plight of Mexican wolves

Turf wars and management missteps have hurt the recovery of Arizona and New Mexico’s remaining wolf packs, leaving them dangerously inbred.

 

In the West, wildlife managers have wavered between killing Mexican wolves and trying to save them. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials have released wolves to the wild, then yanked them back out, a push-and-pull that is now forcing a reckoning with mismanagement and inbreeding among wolf populations. In this episode of “West Obsessed,” writers and editors of High Country News discuss a recent feature story on the wolves and ask: Is there hope for their recovery?