wildlife

Conservation CATalyst

The first publicly released video of the only known wild jaguar in the United States shows the giant cat roaming around a creek and other parts of a mountain range in southern Arizona.

El Jefe — Spanish for "the boss" — has been living in the Santa Rita Mountains, about 25 miles south of downtown Tucson, for over three years.

Conservationists tracking the jaguar released a short video Wednesday showing him walking around mountain terrain.

Mark Henle/The Arizona Republic

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says they do not know why two Mexican gray wolves died after being tranquilized and captured by the agency’s biologists. The deaths happened during the annual population survey of the endangered animals in eastern Arizona and New Mexico. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.


Wildlife officials are investigating the deaths of two Mexican gray wolves they say were killed after being struck by a field team's tranquilizer darts.

The team of state and federal wildlife officials was surveying the wolves in an annual population count that also involves capturing wolves with tranquilizer darts to attach radio collars to them.

In a statement Tuesday, the Arizona Game and Fish Department and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said one wolf was darted Jan. 23 and released into the wild before dying four days later.

Michael Chow/The Republic

Four endangered Mexican gray wolves were found dead last December in Arizona and New Mexico. It’s the first time in three months that wildlife officials have reported deaths in the population that makes up the Mexican Wolf Reintroduction Project. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.

For millennia, people have coveted rare goods they could get only through trade with others. The Ancestral Puebloans of the Colorado Plateau were no exception. They traveled great distances to exchange items like local turquoise, hides, and pottery for exotic shells, copper bells, and cacao.


Utah state officials are balking at the possible inclusion of southern Utah in a recovery zone for the Mexican gray wolf.

The Utah Wildlife Board says in a letter sent this week to the Department of the Interior that science shows the northern limit of the species' range is in central New Mexico and Arizona. The board called the plan bad policy, bad science and bad for the Mexican gray wolf.

The board's letter dovetails with a similar one sent last month by Utah Gov. Gary Herbert and governors in Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona.

Dan Ruby, University of Nevada, Reno

Rollie-polies, book lice and bugs called springtails are among the 10 newly discovered insects that live only on the remote Easter Island in the Pacific Ocean. Northern Arizona University Ecologist Jut Wynne and his colleagues found eight of these creatures. They're eking out an existence in the limited entrances and skylights of caves.


The name is practically as long as the animal itself: the “chisel-toothed kangaroo rat.” It lives in desert landscapes from Oregon and California through Utah and into northwest Arizona. 


Chris Parish

A new study shows only about half of wild California condors live long enough to raise a chick.  The researchers found one of the threats faced by the endangered birds is wildfire.


Stephen Root/12 News

The Grand Canyon Bison Management Act is awaiting a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives after passing though committee. The law would allow specially licensed members of the public to buy tags to hunt the animals within Grand Canyon National Park. Arizona Public Radio’s Ryan Heinsius reports.


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