Lehigh Valley Zoo
April 3, 2021
(Schnecksville, PA) –
At almost 14 years old, Omega exceeded the median life expectancy by four years. He was an important part of the Mexican Gray Wolf Species Survival Program (SSP), which aims to release wolves bred in Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) zoos into the wild.
Mexican gray wolves are a subspecies of gray wolf, often referred to as “el lobo”, and are the most endangered subspecies of wolf in the world. Just like each wolf is important in the pack, each wolf plays a vital role in maintaining nature’s delicate balance. Staff and guests will greatly miss Omega and his memorable antics during carcass feeds, as well as chasing after his brothers in playful pack games.
During this time, animal care staff will be monitoring Magdalena, the Zoo’s female wolf, because of changing pack dynamics to ensure she is adjusting. She may choose to stay off exhibit as she adjusts so we greatly appreciate everyone’s understanding during this transition.
The Lehigh Valley Zoo, in conjunction with AZA, will begin searching and working on a timeline to bring new pack members to the zoo to introduce to Magdalena. Following the SSP for Mexican gray wolves, the hope is to find her a suitable partner as well.
LV Zoo is one of approximately 50 zoos and conservation centers helping to rehabilitate Mexican gray wolves. This subspecies was nearly brought to extinction by widespread trapping and poisoning in the early 1900s. After reintroducing Mexican gray wolves, there are a minimum of 163 in the wild and approximately 400 in the captive breeding program as of 2019.
LV Zoo is proud to support the recovery of the Mexican gray wolf population, and will continue to educate the public on these fascinating and beautiful animals in hopes they will one day have a sustainable wild population. By supporting AZA accredited institutions, individuals can help save species like the Mexican gray wolf.
As a member-supported non-profit organization, Lehigh Valley Zoological Society was founded in 2004, but it has been treasured community landmark for centuries. Located in the Lehigh Valley’s Trexler Game Preserve, we have educated and entertained more than five million people.
Accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), the Lehigh Valley Zoo hosts year-round, family-friendly events and activities, educational programs, and camps. Through a mission to create a safe, engaging and enlightening wildlife experience for guests of all ages, the Zoo demonstrates leadership in the cultural, scientific and conservation communities. To learn more about Lehigh Valley Zoo, we invite you to visit our website, www.lvzoo.org, or follow us on Facebook @LVZOO.