After Nearly a Century, California Once Again Dances with the Gray Wolf

But what does its reemergence mean for local livestock?

As a wolf pack settles into the mountains of Northern California near where ranchers graze sheep and cattle, the wild canines find an unlikely friend in Breanna Owens, a local rancher. Ranchers eradicated wolves back in the 1920s, but their recent reemergence has people like Owens looking for a way for her livestock and the wolves to co-exist.

According to a story in the “This Land Is Your Land” series for The Guardian, “Gray wolves were long seen as livestock-killing vermin and were driven nearly to extinction by the early 1900s. They were listed as endangered in 1978, and in 1995 a reintroduction effort began in Yellowstone. Packs have since established themselves throughout the northern Rocky Mountains and in Washington and Oregon.”

And now that packs have started to reappear in California, it’s people like Owens and her partnership with a not-for-profit group dedicated to rebuilding the state’s long-lost wolf population that might be key to their long-term success.

You can read more about Owens and local efforts between ranchers and preservationists here.

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