Wolf Haven class draws students from around the world

TENINO, Wash. - Tenino's Wolf Haven held it's tenth annual Wildlife Handling and Chemical Immobilization course this week. The course attracted biologists and students from around the world who got hands-on experience with endangered Mexican gray wolves.

The Mexican gray was nearly driven to extinction, at one point only 5 were known to exist.

Through conservation efforts from places like Wolf Haven, the Mexican gray has now been reintroduced to the wild in Southwest United States, but its numbers are still perilously low.

The 3-day course focuses on compassionate and safe techniques to capture, immobilize, and examine wild animals. Dr. Mark Johnson, who has been teaching these classes for nearly 20 years, says the work being done here has a world-wide impact.

"These wolves, in their pens, are helping animals all over the world," Dr. Johnson said. "The biologists here are from Mexico, there's a biologist that wants to work with the snow leopards in Nepal... One student here is from Ireland."

The class offered by Wolf Haven provides training for biologists, and medical care needed for the animals. Part of the rehabilitation plan includes regular check-ups, making the class a integral part for the species survival.

Participants received a Certificate of Training upon course completion.