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Court Halts N.C. Spotlighting of Coyotes After 4th Endangered Red Wolf Shot

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — A North Carolina court halted a temporary state rule that allowed spotlight hunting of coyotes at night in the five-county area of eastern North Carolina inhabited by the world’s only wild population of red wolves (Canis rufus) on Wednesday, November 21.

The ruling came in response to a preliminary injunction motion and request for expedited hearing filed by the Southern Environmental Law Center (SELC) in Wake County Superior Court on behalf of the Animal Welfare Institute, Defenders of Wildlife, and the Red Wolf Coalition.

“We are grateful that the court recognized the lethal threat spotlight hunting of coyotes at night poses to the few remaining red wolves,” said Tara Zuardo, a legal associate at the Animal Welfare Institute. “We need to focus on protecting and restoring this population in the wild, as it is essential to the conservation of the species. The red wolf needs these areas of protected habitat to survive.”

At least four of the 100 or so wild red wolves have been killed since the rule went into effect. Red wolves and coyotes are similar in size, coats, and coloring so red wolves are frequently mistaken for coyotes, even in daylight. Gunshot deaths are a significant threat to red wolf recovery and a leading cause of red wolf mortality…

Read the entire article on heraldonline.com: Court Halts N.C. Spotlighting of Coyotes After 4th Endangered Red Wolf Shot

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