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A seventh wolf pack has been identified in the eastern canton of Graubünden, bringing the total number of packs in Switzerland to at least nine.
The latest pack contains at least six pups, according to the Graubünden Hunting and Fishing Authority. The sighting adds to the 35-40 wolves in the canton, with some 80 believed to be roaming Switzerland.
The first pack was sighted in 2012 in the Calanda region of Graubünden, signalling the return of breeding wolves to the alpine country.
The growth in numbers of the predator has resulted in mixed feelings between environmentalists and farmers. Last month a pair of wolves were blamed for killing 19 sheep in a single weekend in the neighbouring canton of St Gallen.
Swiss voters are set to have their say on hunting reforms on September 27, after an intervention by animal protection campaigners.
They are protesting against recent legal amendments to the Swiss hunting law which would make it easier to hunt protected species such as wolves, bears and ibex to prevent property damage or danger to humans. The amendments permit targeted individual shooting and provide for a transfer of decision-making powers from the federal government to the country’s 26 cantons.