Ohio not alone in wildlife comebacks

Ohio isn’t the only place where once-abundant wildlife is making a comeback.

The big outdoor news in Nevada (where I am staying for another week) is the first verified sighting of a wolf in the state since 1922.

That should give ranchers in the northern part of the state another thing to worry about. They already fret over recent national monument designations and other federal incursions into their open-range grazing territory.

But the Nevada Department of Wildlife said the young male wolf, spotted in November about 150 miles north of Reno, was probably looking for a mate and didn’t stick around. There’s no reason to think Nevada has an established or breeding wolf population – at least at this point.

The young wolf was a “tourist” from northern California – a wandering member of the Shasta Pack, which includes two adults and five offspring, published reports said.

How do biologists know this?

Researchers at the University of Idaho ran DNA tests on scat gathered from the visiting Nevada male and matched results with DNA from the Shasta Pack.

Isn’t science wonderful these days?

State wildlife officials promised to keep a close eye on the wolf situation and report any further sightings immediately.

That, at least, should provide a measure of comfort to local ranchers.

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