Grey wolf sighted on Central Coast for the first time in over a century

In Kern County, CA, researchers are celebrating after spotting a single grey wolf on a wildlife camera. The California Department of Fish & Wildlife says it's the first verified wolf to return to the area in over 100 years.

The lone wolf made the roughly 700 mile journey from the border of Oregon to Central California, crossing 18 other counties and several major highways before its tracking collar stopped transmitting. It was finally found a few weeks later, in May, on a wildlife camera on a ranch in Kern County.

Wildlife experts are now trying to reconnect with the wolf's collar and investigating the ranch for DNA to see which wolf made the trek.

Those who think they've spotted the wolf (who is wearing a purple collar) are being encouraged to report the sighting to the California Department of Fish & Wildlife. Residents are also reminded that it is illegal to harm, pursue, harass, hunt, shoot, kill, trap, or capture gray wolves.