PORT ARTHUR — “Predators reported not likely red wolves”
That was the headline of my first-ever published story that appeared in the Opportunity Valley News 20 years ago this week.
I was only 19 years old and began a journey in the outdoors communication field that has been rewarding, challenging and always interesting.
It has taken me everywhere from the swamps of Southeast Texas to the jungle of South America and from Toledo Bend reservoir to the Segra River in Spain.
Looking back, one thing is clear.
When it comes to my interest in wildlife, not much has changed. If anything it has only gotten deeper as encounter after encounter and investigation after investigation continually spark my endless curiosity and ignites inspiration.
That first story dealt with reports of wolves attacking livestock in Orange County and the stance from state officials was the animals in question were either coyotes or descendants of red wolf/coyote hybrids.
After two decades research shows there may be more wolf in some of these animals was previously thought while other studies suggest red wolves were fertile hybrids of wolves and coyotes to begin with.
Science rarely concludes when it comes to wildlife so I will let them debate that subject. As I have written before, if it looks like a wolf and (literally) howls like a wolf well it is wolf enough for me.
While filming my new project “God’s Outdoors with Chester Moore”, a web-based TV series, I found myself amongst wolves several types working with and photographing captive adults and pups.
In fact, while conducting an interview with local wolf expert Jerry Mills I heard a statement that was simple but profound when it comes to these great animals.
“There is nothing wilder than a wolf,” he said.
There would be no way to accurately measure the wildness of an animal, however there is something in wolves that is just different.