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Rare ferrets settling in at new home at Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge

Posted at 7:01 AM, Nov 30, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-30 09:49:38-05

DENVER -- Dozens of rare ferrets are settling in and reproducing at a wildlife refuge outside Denver one year after they were released there.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service counted 47 black-footed ferrets last month at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge. That includes 71 percent of the original 28 captive-born ferrets released there in 2015.

Kimberly Fraser of the Fish and Wildlife Service black-footed ferret program calls that a phenomenal survival rate.

Searchers also found nearly two dozen black-footed ferrets that were born at the refuge, a promising sign for the campaign to bring the animals back.

Black-footed ferrets were once thought to be extinct but a small colony was found in Wyoming in 1981. They're classified as an endangered species.