Zoos
2:03 pm
Tue May 15, 2012

Endangered red wolf pups born at Point Defiance Zoo

At least 6 red wolf pups have been born at Tacoma's Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium (PDZA).

Millie, an 8-year-old, gave birth to the pups over a 30 hour period that began Sunday night. The father is 9-year-old Graham. The mother and pups are secluded in an out of view den area in the Red Wolf Woods exhibit.

These are the first red wolves to be born on zoo grounds in 29 years. Wolves are usually bred at other locations. A female named Lupin had a litter of 9 pups earlier this month at a breeding facility in Eatonville. 

The zoo is trying to install a camera so the public can view the pups in their den. The pups are expected to start exploring the exhibit outside the den in about 3 or 4 weeks.

Millie's first two pups were born on Mother's Day. They're males, and appear to be healthy and nursing normally. Zoo staff members haven't seen the other pups yet, but hope to see them on Wednesday.

Red wolves were declared biologically extinct in the wild in 1980. Thanks to breeding efforts at Point Defiance and other zoos, there are now approximately 100 red wolves roaming a recovery area established by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in North Carolina.