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Gray wolves in the semi-wild animal park at Les Angles, in the Pyrenees mountains of southern France.
Wolf populations in the wild jumped in France last year, a faster-than-expected increase that will prompt the government to increase hunting quotas and take other measures to protect livestock herds, officials said Friday.
ONCFS - Hunting - Wildlife - Agency - Tracking
The ONCFS hunting and wildlife agency said on-the-ground tracking and mathematical modelling had determined 479 to 578 adult wolves on French territory during this year's winter count, or an average of 530.
It was a 23 percent jump from the average of 430 adults counted the previous winter.
Wolves - France - Populations - Alps - Italy
Wolves were hunted to extinction in France by the 1930s, but gradually started reappearing in the 1990s as populations spread across the Alps from Italy.
They are now found mainly in the Alps and other mountainous regions of the southeast, where most of the recent pack increases were found, as well as in pockets of central France.
Wolves - Pyrenees - Mountains - France - Spain
But wolves have also been detected recently in the Pyrenees mountains that separate France and Spain.
The population growth has infuriated French farmers who say the predators are decimating their flocks, despite a...
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