MEXICAN WOLF BIOLOGIST
Interested in wildlife since she was young, Genevieve always knew what she wanted to do for a living. “My love of wildlife and the outdoors spurred me to pursue a line of work that allowed me to protect, manage and work with those resources,” she says.
Her job managing Mexican wolves changes each season. In the spring, her time is spent locating wolf dens for cross-fostering operations that aim to help the genetic recovery of the Mexican wolf population. In the fall, she traps wolves for GPS collar placement. Year-round Genevieve works closely with ranchers and range riders to prevent and mitigate wolf-livestock conflicts.
“My favorite part of the job is when I go out on foot and look for wolves in preparation for our annual counts,” she says. “There’s nothing like being out in the mountains following wildlife.”
Genevieve tells a memorable story about a den count operation: “Each year when adult wolves are away, we visit dens to carefully and quickly count pups. The counts are important for understanding how many pups are born each year and how many reach adulthood.
“One year when we arrived, the tiny puppies ran into their den. I crawled inside to count and most of them huddled together. I heard one small pup, small enough to fit in a cereal bowl, give a little, high-pitched growl. He stepped forward and gave me his biggest, strongest, little bark-howl. It was one of the cutest things I have ever seen. I quickly got my count and left the area, letting the little one think he scared me off.”
Genevieve wants Arizonans to know that the people who work to conserve wildlife are dedicated, passionate and hard-working. “We genuinely care about maintaining healthy wildlife ecosystems for present and future Arizonans,” she says. “The work can be fun, but it can also be very challenging. People who work in this field love the resources they manage and protect.”