Red Wolf

Canis rufus

The red wolf is currently a wolf species in critical danger of extinction.

Native to the north of the American continent its distribution area was originally the entire southeastern area of the United States, eastern Pennsylvania, southern Florida and southeastern Texas. Since they have been, throughout history, considered guilty of attacking livestock and game that serve as food for humans, both farmers and ranchers have been responsible for the drop in the population of these wolves. Before entering a critical state of conservation, red wolves inhabited mountains, lowland forests and wetlands. Currently, red wolves survive mainly in tiny packs and small reintroduced populations in inaccessible swamps and mountainous terrain. Today there are only around 250 specimens, of which 200 are in captivity.

The red wolf is a large canine specie that can measure between 60 and 66 centimeters in height. The weight of males can vary between 22 and 41 kg, while females can vary between 20 and 30 kg. Males are slightly larger, measuring up to 125 cm in length (excluding the tail), while females can reach 120 cm. Red wolves are generally characterized by upperparts of a mixed color of cinnamon, fawn and gray or black, while the back is normally dark. The snout and limbs are brown and the tail has a black tip. In winter, the reddish element of the coat is dominant. An annual molt takes place in the summer.

It is a social animal, and mainly nocturnal, living in groups of up to 7 members, becoming a super predator within the ecosystem in which it lives. Wild red wolves typically have a single partner throughout their lives. They reach sexual maturity in the second or third year of life. The reproduction period covers the months between February and April.

Although it has often been incorrectly portrayed in modern times, the wolf was seen by ancient civilizations as a link to the Sun God and as a protector of warriors on earth and in the afterlife.




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