IN THE ALLIGATOR RIVER NATIONAL WILDLIFE REFUGE, winter is a time of waiting. On the gravel roads that run between the canals and the dense impenetrable forest, biologists wait silently in the cold air for a glimpse of the dusky red canid who calls this small patch of land home. Far away, others are waiting as well—waiting for the release of new U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service management documents that will determine the red wolf’s future. In this placid wilderness—where the only sounds are those of the wind in the trees and the tapping of woodpeckers—it almost feels as though the world is on pause.