One of eight endangered red wolf pups born this week at Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium died overnight.
“We don’t yet know why this pup died but it appears to have been the smallest pup in the litter,” said Will Waddell, the zoo’s Red Wolf Recovery Program coordinator.
The pup who died is believed to be a female; her siblings include three females and four males.
Zoo staff said the litter’s mother, 8-year-old Millie, continues to be protective of her pups, which appear to be healthy and nursing.
The public cannot yet view the wolves, which are at the Red Wolf Woods exhibit, but the pups are expected to emerge from the den within three weeks. They were born over a 30-hour period Sunday and Monday.