Beardsley Zoo welcomes Mexican gray wolf brothers
BRIDGEPORT — The city’s Beardsley Zoo welcomed a pair of Mexican gray wolves back in December that recently came out of necessary quarantine to be viewed by the public, according to a news release Wednesday.
The wolves were born on May 13, 2017, at the Endangered Wolf Center in Eureka, Missouri. They joined the Beardsley Zoo family on Dec. 6, 2018. The two were in quarantine, required for any new zoo arrival, until recently.
The two males are brother and will remain unnamed.
“This serves to emphasize their wild status, and helps to prevent human/wolf interaction so that a re-introduction to the wild at some point may be possible,” the news release said.
The brother join the zoo’s remaining female to begin a small pack after the zoo lost a second female gray wolf to a medically untreatable condition last month. The female wolf the brother joins was born in 2007 at the California Wolf Center in Julian, California.
There is no breeding currently planned for the new pack, the zoo said.
Guests can see the three Mexican gray wolves at the Wolf Observation Learning Facility at the zoo daily between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m.
“We’re pleased to add two new wolves to our Wolf Observation Learning Facility, and offer our guests an incredible opportunity to see these beautiful and fascinating animals up close,” said Gregg Dancho, zoo director.
The zoo is also home to two red wolves — a male named Peanut and a female named Shy. The two wolf breeds are two of the rarest mammals in North America, according to the zoo. In the mid-1980s, hunting, trapping and poisoning caused the extinction of the Mexican gray wolves in the wild. At that time, only a handful remained in human care.
“Both species of wolves at Connecticut’s Beardsley Zoo are imperiled. It is only through managed breeding and reintroduction that they survive in the wild today,” Dancho said.
In 1998, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released 11 Mexican gray wolves back into the wild in Arizona and New Mexico. Today, there is a population of 114 individual Mexican gray wolves in the wild.