Filming the American Red Wolf
Over the past year, we have been working with Conservation Centers for Species Survival, the Endangered Wolf Center, US Fish and Wildlife and a host of other institutions all dedicated to saving America’s rarest mammal to create an educational film aimed at inspiring action to prevent this animal’s second extinction in the wild.
The American red wolf is an elusive canid that once was native to the eastern portion of the United States. Once European settlers moved across the country, this wolf was removed from much of its range, opening up the east to coyotes. In an effort to prevent this animal from going extinct for good, the last 14 known wolves remaining in the wild were rounded up in the 1980’s and placed into managed care facilities to start breeding programs. In 1987, red wolves were released in North Carolina where they still remain today, however, their numbers have plummeted and are estimated to be less than thirty.
Justin Grubb and Alex Goetz have spent weeks in the field in North Carolina filming wild wolves, setting trail cameras and working with US Fish and Wildlife Biologists. The goal, is to collect compelling footage of an animal that is rarely seen and even more rarely photographed in the wild.
Through the efforts of Running Wild Media, a lot of really unique and rare behaviors of these misunderstood carnivores have been brought to light through the use of trail cameras placed in areas of high activity in the Alligator River Wildlife Refuge. Trail cameras are an incredible way to capture footage of wildlife behaving naturally without the interference of a humans presence. In addition, the crew teamed up with biologists to utilize their radio telemetry technology to find the wolves in their natural habitat. Seventeen of the wild wolves have radio collars on them which emit VHF radio frequency which can be picked up by biologists to allow them to triangulate where the wolves generally are located. US fish and Wildlife also uses this same technology from the air with antennas mounted on to the wings of aircraft and fly over the refuge once a week.
Behind the scenes filming in the field in North Carolina.
To learn more about this amazing carnivore, follow us on Facebook and Instagram to see more red wolf content. To make a donation to the red wolf recovery program, visit Conservation Centers for Species Survival’s website.