DURHAM, N.C. (AP) – A wolf nearing extinction in the wild has given birth to six pups at a North Carolina museum.
The News & Observer reports a 6-year-old red wolf at the Museum of Life and Science in Durham gave birth Friday to three male and three female pups. It marks the first births of the critically endangered animal at the museum since 2002.
A critically endangered species is at very high risk of extinction.
Red wolves were once a top predator throughout the southeastern United States. Their numbers now total less than 300.
The museum’s red wolves are part of a U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s red wolf recovery program.
The mother was born at a nature center in Tennessee and transferred to Durham last November.