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NC: Feds say fewer red wolf pups born in NC in 2013

COLUMBIA, N.C. (AP) – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says the number of red wolf pups and litters is down slightly this year in eastern North Carolina compared to recent years.

The agency says 34 pups in seven litters were found this year, compared to 39 pups in nine litters last year and 40 pups from 10 litters in 2011. In 2010, the agency recorded 43 pups from nine litters.

The Red Wolf Recovery Program also reported 23 pups from four litters born in zoos and nature centers participating in the Species Survival Plan captive breeding program.

About 100 red wolves live in five northeastern counties. Their habitat includes national wildlife refuges, a Department of Defense bombing range, state-owned lands and private property.