Authorities announced Wednesday that a gray wolf, which caught the eye of biologists because it was on a historical trip across North America, died from injuries sustained when it was struck by a car in California.
According to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, OR93 was found dead Nov. 10 near Lebec after traveling “at least 935 air miles in California, a minimum average of 16 air miles per day.” According to the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, OR93 was last seen south in 1922. Lebec lies approximately 70 miles north-east of Los Angeles.
Officials believe OR93 was hit by a vehicle and do not suspect foul play, the CDFW said in a statement.
OR93, a male wolf born in 2019 in Oregon, was first tracked entering Modoc County in northeastern California in January 2021 before briefly returning to Oregon, according to the CDFW. He traveled south through California and by March was in Fresno County – over 500 miles from the Oregon border.
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He received his last collar transmission from San Luis Obispo County, April 5.,According to CDFW.
“His epic travels across California inspired the world. In this annual time of reflection, I thank him for the hope he gave us and for a brief glimpse into what it would be like for wolves to roam wild and free again,” Amaroq Weiss, an advocate with the Center for Biological Diversity, told NBC News.
“I’m devastated to learn of the death of this remarkable wolf.”
According to the Center for Biological Diversity, gray wolves are on the endangered species’ list since 1974. According to the CDFW, they are native to California but were exterminated in California in the 1920s.
Follow Asha Gilbert @Coastalasha. Email: [email protected]