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Meet the red wolf, the world’s most endangered member of the dog family. Native to the United States, red wolves ( Canis rufus) have a tawny, reddish coat, and they are intermediate in size between grey wolves and coyotes. That makes sense, as these two species interbred in the past to produce the red wolves’ ancestors. Nevertheless, recent research shows that red wolves are a unique species. The only place where red wolves remain in the wild is the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge in eastern North Carolina, and surrounding counties. There are only an estimated 35 or fewer wild red wolves, and the International Union for the Conservation of Nature classifies them as critically endangered . Full story

25 January