Last caribou in lower 48 US states all but extinct: 'The herd is functionally lost'

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Experts fear only three of South Selkirk herd, which moves from Canada into Idaho and Washington, survived winter – all female

The last remaining herd of caribou to roam the contiguous United States is believed to be on the brink of disappearing, after an aerial count suggested that only three members survived the winter – all of them female.

The South Selkirk herd were once part of a larger population of southern mountain caribou whose habitat spanned much of the Pacific Northwest. But human activity – from hunting to logging and snowmobiling – has forced the population to break off into small herds.

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