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Wolverine in Colorado the first since 1919

The Associated Press
Aspen, CO Colorado

DENVER – Colorado has its first wild wolverine in 90 years.

The New York-based Wildlife Conservation Society said Thursday that a wolverine its researchers have been tracking since early April has crossed into northern Colorado. It’s the first known wolverine in Colorado since 1919.

The Colorado Division of Wildlife confirmed the wolverine’s appearance.

Bob Inman, a Montana-based researcher for the society, tagged the young male wolverine near Grand Teton National Park, Wyo. Inman described the wolverine as a 2-year-old male, weighing about 20 pounds to 30 pounds.

Wolverines are roaming animals that are on the go nearly their entire lives, traveling hundreds of miles and spending much of their time on mountaintops.

The largest members of the weasel family, wolverines were once common in the northern Rocky Mountains. But they were nearly wiped out by 1930, victims of trapping and poisons left by farmers and ranchers.

“It’s one of the species we know the least about because we haven’t studied it that much,” Inman said.

Inman said the wolverine is still in Colorado, likely in a mountainous area near a timberline. He couldn’t predict how long the critter would stay, but he said humans shouldn’t be alarmed by wolverines.

“They’re pretty tough, but they’re not aggressive,” Inman said. He said wolverines only grow to be about as big as a small dog.

The Wildlife Conservation Society, which runs the Bronx Zoo and three other New York City zoos, studies wildlife worldwide. Other species tracked by the society include gorillas in Africa, monkeys in Cambodia and rare dolphins in the Bay of Bengal.


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