A report on the taxonomic status and distribution of the red wolf

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U.S. Bureau of Sport Fisheries and Wildlife; for sale by the Supt. of Docs., U.S. Govt. Print. Off., 1972 - Nature - 36 pages
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Comparison of 213 skulls of Canis rufus with 214 C. lupus and 335 C. latrans indicate that the red wolf is a distinct species. Before human disruption of the environment, rufus, lups, and latrans maintained their distinct status, and available specimens show no evidence that the red wolf intergraded with either coyote or gray wolf. A series of 71 skulls shows a complete variation from typical rufus to typical latrans. Apparently modification and decline of the red wolf population led to the breakdown of isolation and the formation of a hybrid swarm that suggests possible interbreeding with the coyote.

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