Film: #2 The Right to be Wild

April 17, 7:00 pm            

At Mary D. Fisher Theatre

Q&A with Apex Ambassador Pack following the film.

Emily Renn, Executive Director of the Grand Canyon Wolf Recovery Project will also be part of the panel and Q&A immediately following the film The Right to Be Wild. The filmmaker Katja will also be there. 

In the Mountains of Arizona, New Mexico and Mexico lives a very rare and critically endangered wolf, the Mexican Gray Wolf, also called Lobo.

This documentary is a tale of hope and determination, driven by science, about the most endangered subspecies of gray wolf in the world. It is a story told by the dedicated people who work tirelessly trying to save them; the conservationists, students, agency biologists, and everyday citizens.

By the early 1970's, the Lobo were thought to be completely gone from the wild. A new era dawned for the Lobo when the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) and the Mexican Government agreed on a daring plan to save them from extinction.

In the late 1970’s a trapper was hired to capture wild Lobos. Only ONE female and four males were captured in the Sierra Madre Mountains of Mexico, none lived in the US. Extinction was nearly a fact because they were the last Lobo’s found in the wild. These wild wolves were joined by two pairs already living in captivity, and a breeding program was started to increase their numbers.

On March 29th, 1998, the USFWS released 11 Mexican gray wolves into Arizona’s Blue Range mountains, and since then the lobos have expanded their population across Arizona and New Mexico. As of Feb. 2017, there were only 114 Mexican wolves counted in the wilds of the southwest, a number that is still far too small after 20 years of recovery and reintroduction. Today the Lobo continues to face serious genetic challenges. Inbreeding depression is a concern in the current wild population and may be a major contributor to their low numbers.

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