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Wolverines' lucky number

Feb 01, 2013

Thirteen is a lucky number for wolverines. Thirteen years since conservationists including Conservation Northwest urged their protection under the federal Endangered Species Act, the US Fish and Wildlife Service has announced its proposal to list the wolverine in the lower-48 states as a threatened species.

Wolverines' lucky number

Wolverines: will they get enough protection to help them endure? Photo copyright Jannik Schou

See wolverines on the front page of the Seattle Times.
Send a letter by May 6 for protections!

Thirteen is a lucky number for wolverines. Thirteen years since conservationists including Conservation Northwest urged their protection under the federal Endangered Species Act, the US Fish and Wildlife Service has announced its proposal to list the wolverine in the lower-48 states as a threatened species.

The threatened listing will help protect wolverines and promote recovery. The Service acknowledged that wolverines deserve protection because of their small population size and threats posed to their habitat by climate change and other disturbances to their high elevation habitat.

The move will bring new resources to help Washington’s recovering wolverine population. 

“The remote, rugged, and snowy North Cascades are ideal wolverine habitat,” said Dave Werntz, Science and Conservation Director with Conservation Northwest. “Protection under the Endangered Species Act will help our wolverine population survive an uncertain future with a warming climate, shrinking snowpack, and increasingly fragmented habitat.” 

Federal researchers have been studying Washington’s wolverines since 2005. They’re tracking a total of eleven wolverines in the Cascades, seven females and four males that inhabit the North Cascades transboundary region, and have located two natal den sites.

Conservation Northwest's concurrent citizen monitoring project has also documented three additional wolverines in the Cascades using unique chest markings and DNA from hair snags. Read  the full 2012 monitoring report.

Washington State now plays a critical role in recovery of wolverines. We need connected landscapes and habitat to sustain wolverines here.


Related links:

Read the press release

A wild Christmas for wolverines: 2012 inter-agency wolverine study update

Wolverines caught on film: 2012 citizen monitoring highlights wolverines' return

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