Genetics testing conducted by Colorado Parks and Wildlife adds to the growing evidence that a wolf pack has formed in Moffat County.
In a press release, CPW officials said four scat samples collected near a scavenged elk carcass in early January came from wolves, according to lab results. The DNA indicated three females and one male, according to CPW, and that the wolves were likely siblings. This is the first official documentation of a pack of wolves in the state since the 1940s.
“The DNA doesn’t tell us the age,” CPW Species Conservation Program Manager Eric Odell said in a release. “We don’t know where or when they were born. We can’t say. But that there are closely related wolves is a pretty significant finding.”
Wolves are a federally endangered species and fall under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. According to officials with the agency, killing a wolf can result in federal charges, including a $100,000 fine and a year in prison, per offense.
Anyone who sees or hears wolves, or finds evidence of any wolf activity is urged to contact CPW. A Wolf Sighting Form can be found on the CPW website.