OREGON NEWS: Oregon-Born Wolf That Traveled Nearly 1,000 Miles To California Hit And Killed By Vehicle – KGW.com

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OR93, who thrilled biologists by traveling nearly 1,000 miles from Oregon to California, was hit by a vehicle in California.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — An Oregon-born gray wolf that thrilled biologists as it journeyed far south into California was found dead after apparently being struck by a vehicle, authorities said Wednesday.

No foul play was suspected in the death of the male wolf known as OR93, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife said in a news release. Gray wolves are listed as endangered in California, where they were wiped out by the 1920s.

“Before his demise, he was documented traveling the farthest south in California since wolves returned to the state, which is historically wolf habitat. The last documented wolf that far south was captured in San Bernardino County in 1922,” the department said.

A truck driver reported spotting the dead wolf on Nov. 10 near the Kern County town of Lebec, about 75 miles (120 kilometers) northwest of downtown Los Angeles.

The carcass was located along a dirt trail near a frontage road running parallel to Interstate 5, and a warden who responded quickly identified the wolf as OR93 because of a radio tracking collar it wore, the department said.

. A necropsy at Wildlife Health Laboratory, Rancho Cordova revealed that the wolf suffered significant tissue trauma to its left back leg, a dislocated hip and soft tissue trauma in the abdomen.

OR93 was born to the White River pack in northern Oregon in 2019. He went into California’s Modoc County on Jan. 30, 2021, returned to Oregon briefly, then again entered California on Feb. 4 and headed south.

His last collar transmission came from the central coast’s San Luis Obispo County, April 5. By then he had traveled at least 935 miles (1,505 kilometers) in California, the wildlife department said.

OR93 was among a small number of gray wolves that have begun coming to California from other states.

” “I am devastated to hear about the passing of this extraordinary wolf. His epic journeys across California inspired us all,” Amaroq Weiss (senior wolf advocate, Center for Biological Diversity) said in a statement.

“In this annual time for reflection, I thank him both for the hope that he gave us as well as for giving us a glimpse into what it would look like for wolves free to roam unassisted again,” Weiss stated.

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