State wildlife biologist Richard Shinn spotted OR7 on Tuesday in California's Modoc County and snapped the first known color photo of the male gray wolf that crossed over from Oregon in December, becoming California's only documented free-ranging wolf since the 1920s.
OR7 has been on the move in extreme northern California now for months. “He appeared very healthy,” Karen Kovacs, a wildlife program manager for the California Department of Fish and Game in Redding, told Associated Press.
The wolf was spotted on private land when Shinn, a California game warden and a federal trapper visited ranchers on Tuesday to notify them that GPS signals showed the gray wolf was nearby. They looked over a sagebrush hillside with binoculars and saw the wolf. "There, all of a sudden, out pops a head, and there he is,” said Kovacs.
OR7 broke off from a pack in northern Oregon and began his solo trek in search of a new range, food and a mate.
Previous photo from Oregon:
Previously on LA Observed: