Wolf depredation on livestock creates cascade of costs, reactions

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SPRINGERVILLE — An Apache County rancher has lost three calves and, as a result, two wolves have been removed from a wolf pack.

The cascade of events following the confirmed depredations by the Diamond Pack, consisting of Mexican gray wolves, in Apache County in the days following the annual wolf population census, has begun.

But it is far from over.

Mexican gray wolves, an endangered species that was reintroduced into the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forest in the late 1990s, have continued to expand its population and range in eastern Arizona and western New Mexico’s Gila National Forest. Mexican wolf managers representing several federal and state agencies were conducting an official count of the animals across the region in the past few weeks when a suspected wolf kill was reported in Apache County, one day after a wolf known as AM (alpha male) 1249, of the Diamond Pack, was captured, fitted with a GPS collar and released back into the wild.<<<Read More>>>