From KTVZ.COM News Sources
PORTLAND, Ore. — The conservation group Oregon Wild announced Thursday a two-part contest for Oregon children and teenagers to suggest names for “OR-7”, a two-year-old male wolf currently roaming the Cascades near Crater Lake National Park.
A second part of the Connect with the Wild contest encourages kids and teens to draw, paint, or color their best rendition of the wolf in his journey across more than 300 miles of Oregon desert, grasslands, mountains, and forests. Though he was fitted with a GPS tracking collar in the spring, no public photos currently exist of “OR-7”.
The Connect with the Wild initiative seeks to promote awareness of wolf conservation in Oregon, and to support Oregon families who are interested in efforts to conserve wolves and other native wildlife.
The home page for the contest on Oregon Wild’s web site includes updates and maps charting the journey of “OR-7” and his latest location, photos, and links to educational resources on wolves and wolf recovery for parents and educators. In addition to building awareness, conservationists hope that the contest helps dispel the myths and misinformation that exists about wolves and discourages poachers and others who would harm endangered wildlife.
The Connect with the Wild contest consists of two parts:
Naming “OR-7” – The naming portion of the contest encourages children and teens under the age of 18 to submit their best suggestion for a name for “OR-7” through the Oregon Wolves Facebook page. For those children too young to have a Facebook account, submissions can be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Submissions must include a name, mailing address, and the age of the person submitting. The deadline for submissions is 5:00 PM on December 16, 2011 after which time wildlife supporters around the state can vote for their favorite. The submitter will receive a one year family membership to Oregon Wild, a copy of the “Living with Wolves” book of wildlife photography, and a gift certificate for a free pair of KEEN hiking shoes.
Art for the Wild – Oregon Wild is also launching a second contest for children and teens to submit their best rendition of “OR-7” in his 300 mile journey across Oregon in search of a mate. Participants will have to use their imagination, as no photos are known to exist of the young wolf. Drawing, painting, coloring, and other forms of art are eligible to win. The deadline for this contest is also 5:00 PM on December 16, 2011, and entries must include a name, mailing address, and the age of the person submitting. Art can be submitted via email to email@example.com, or by mail to Oregon Wild, 5825 North Greeley Avenue, Portland, OR 97217. The winner will be featured in an upcoming issue of Oregon Wild magazine, receive a one year family membership to Oregon Wild, a copy of the “Living with Wolves” book of wildlife photography, and a gift certificate for a free pair of KEEN hiking shoes.
With the support of their parents and teachers, winners of either contest may request an Oregon Wild representative come to their class for a free presentation on wolf conservation in Oregon, as well as a showing of portions of the “Lords of Nature” documentary film.
“OR-7” has captured the imagination of millions of Oregonians with his 300 mile journey across the state in search of a mate. His latest known location is just Southeast of Crater Lake National Park, in Klamath County. OR-7’s odyssey has taken him across at least 9 Oregon Counties. Whether he will winter in the South Cascades, or continue his journey elsewhere, is unknown.
“OR-7” was originally born into the Imnaha Pack of northeast Oregon in the spring of 2009. The Alpha male and female of the Imnaha Pack, the parents of “OR-7”, are believed to have been Oregon’s first breeding pair of wolves in over 65 years, and the young wolf is the first known gray wolf in the Oregon Cascades since 1947.
After being hunted to extinction in the 20th century, the return of wolves to the west is widely seen as one of the America’s greatest conservation success stories along with bald eagles and gray whales. Wolves first returned to Oregon in the late 1990’s and the state is now home to at least 23 confirmed animals after reaching a high of 26 in 2010.