Gray Wolves in the Northern Rocky Mountains

From: Gray Wolf Recovery Coordinator, Helena, MT 7/5/02

Subject: Status of Gray Wolf Recovery, Week of 6/28 to 7/5, 2002

Monitoring

See http://WesternGrayWolf.fws.gov/annualreports.htm for maps of pack locations and home ranges.

Flights indicate that Swan Lake has at least 11 pups, Leopold has 8, wolf #105 has 5 and 2 were seen in the Delta pack.

Please report wolf sightings in MONTANA, IDAHO, OR WYOMING!! If outdoors enthusiasts or AGENCY BIOLOGISTS report evidence of wolves to you please pass that information along to the Service.

Control

On the 30th, Wildlife Services and the Service reinitiated control in the Dubois, WY area. The main group of wolves were in the heavy timber but wolf #147 was located in the same location as on the 28th. He was found lying under water except for his head, in a small creek. He had apparently been kicked by an ungulate and his back leg was shattered. He was euthanized. Wolf #147 was an adult male that dispersed from the Lamar Valley to Cody and then moved south and joined the Washakie pack. Control will be attempted again ASAP, including by trapping and/or ground shooting. Two pack members have been killed and we will attempt to remove 1-2 more. There is only one of the three radioed wolves left in the pack. The alpha female is still collared but 1 wolf dispersed mid-winter and has been missing ever since, and #147 is dead. Two private land shoot-on-site permits are still active.

The 45-day shoot-on-site permits for several cattle ranches in the Paradise Valley near Emigrant, MT lapsed. Early in June shoot-on-site permits for several sheep ranches near Dillon, MT also lapsed. No further depredations were reported and no wolves were shot in either area.

A lone wolf reportedly killed but did not feed on 2 ewes and 2 lambs near Fairfield, ID. Traps were set for a few days but no further sign was located and control was terminated.

A report of one unradioed and three radioed wolves killing sheep just east of McCall, ID was investigated but no wolves, radioed or otherwise, or dead sheep were located.

Wildlife Services investigated a report of a day-old dead sheep in a private land pasture in the Ninemile Valley. One sheep was confirmed killed and another is missing. This farm has had sheep killed in the past. Trapping to radio-collar and release wolves on-site will begin early next week.

A black collared Sunlight pack wolf was seen feeding on a calf near a road in the Sunlight Basin of WY. Wildlife Services investigated and found that a wolf and a bear had been feeding on the carcass. The calf had apparently been struck and killed by a vehicle and was simply being scavenged and was not killed by a predator.

The third annual Predator Alliance Conference "From Control to Coexistence: Reframing how we live with predators" will be held Mammoth Hot Springs October 3 and 4. Several international experts on wildlife/human conflict will speak. For more information call (406)587-3389.

Research

Nothing new to report.

Information and education and law enforcement

Wyoming is beginning public scoping meetings to develop its state wolf management plan. Meetings will be held starting 7:00PM at: Lander July 1; Casper July 2; Sheridan July 3; Rock Springs July 8; Pinedale July 9; Jackson July 10; Cody July 11; and Laramie July 12. For further information call WY G&F at (307)777-4600 or access their web site at gf.state.wy.us . Comments can be submitted at Wolf Plan, 5400 Bishop Blvd., Cheyenne, WY 82006 or at agfwolf@wgf.state.wy.us .

The International Wolf Center -www.wolf.org -has a web site that contains information on identifying wolves an coyotes and for ways that people can avoid conflicts with wolves- go to http://www.wolf.org/wolf/learn/mgt/basics/wolves_humans.asp

The International Wolf Center also has "Gray Wolves Gray Matter: Exploring the social, biological, cultural, and economic issues of wolf survival." It a curriculum for grades 6-12 that was produced in 2001. Contact International Wolf at www.wolf.org or Andrea Strauss at edudir@wolf.org for further information.

Doug Smith taught a wolf class for the Yellowstone Institute on the 30th. Twelve people attended.

Meier, the new seasonal biologist Rose Jaffe, Fontaine, and Bangs met in Helena on the 2nd, to line out equipment and discuss collaring plans for the summer.

The Service's weekly wolf report can now be viewed at the Service's Region 6 web site at http://WesternGrayWolf.fws.gov  in addition to the regular distribution.

Contact: Ed Bangs (406)449-5225 x204 or ED_BANGS@FWS.GOV