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The North Carolina Wildlife Commission has recommended the Red Wolf Recovery Program be axed. In the coming months, the fate of red wolves as a species rests in the hands of the US FWS.

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When I first started working on this game (only about a month ago), the red wolf was in a tough position, as the recovery program for them was under scrutiny and review.

A little background - wolves in North America were hunted to the brink of extinction. By the time attention was even paid to red wolves, back in the 1960's, it was too late for them. They had been hunted to near extinction. Not only this, but their numbers had dwindled to such low levels, that they had begun hybridizing with coyotes. As wolf territory and numbers dwindled, coyotes took over.

Several red wolves were captured and declared extinct in the wild. 14 wolves were chosen to be the stock which would continue the species. After blips, the red wolves were reintroduced to eastern North Carolina.

The recovery has been bumpy. Area hunters, and land owners who accommodate hunters hate the wolves, which are elusive and shy. They also have a very strong lobby toward the state government. Additionally, coyotes have encroached the recovery area since it began. This has lead to hybridization between the red wolves and coyotes, which is detrimental to the preservation of the species.

Last week the NCWC recommended the program be terminated and the wolves be captured and removed.

In the coming months the fate of the red wolf as a species rests in the hands of the federal FWS.

This game operates as though the recovery program operates and it will still be developed in such a way, and I hope those in charge will do the right thing and continue it and by the time this game is complete, the program will not only still be active, but it will have improved (as it should) and will be enjoying a greater level of success.

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