The National Zoo announced it has made a home for three Mexican gray wolves as part of an international recovery effort to reintroduce the highly endangered subspecies into the wild.
At a news conference, zoo and animal conservation officials said the wolves would stay until they can be released into a wilderness area in Arizona, New Mexico or Mexico.
The Mexican gray wolf is the most rare and genetically distinct subspecies of gray wolf in North America. Until a reintroduction program was begun in 1998, Mexican gray wolves had not been seen in the wild in the United States since 1970 or in Mexico since 1980. There are about 200 Mexican gray wolves living today, nearly all of them born and raised in captivity.