The red wolf (Canis lupus rufus or Canis rufus ) is a canine native to the southeastern United States. The subspecies is the product of ancient genetic admixture between a wolf and a coyote, however it is regarded as unique and therefore worthy of conservation by evolutionary biologists. Morphologically it is intermediate between the coyote and gray wolf, and is of a reddish-tawny color. The US Endangered Species Act of 1973 currently does not provide protection for endangered admixed individuals and researchers argue that these should warrant full protection under the Act. However, the red wolf when considered as a species is listed as an endangered species under this Act and is protected by law. Although Canis rufus is not listed in the CITES Appendices of endangered species, since 1996 the IUCN has listed it as a critically endangered species.
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