Gray Wolves in the Northern Rocky Mountains

From: Gray Wolf Recovery Coordinator, Helena, MT 3/7/03

Subject: Status of Gray Wolf Recovery, Week of 2/28 to 3/07, 2003

Monitoring

NEW WEB ADDRESS- See WesternGrayWolf.fws.gov/annualreports.htm  for maps of wolf pack locations and home ranges, tables of wolf numbers and depredations, and summaries of scientific studies.

Please report any sightings of wolf activity to the nearest U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, state Fish and Game Agency, Forest Service, BLM, Tribal, or USDA Wildlife Services office. We thank everyone for their cooperation.

Control

Wildlife Services in Utah called on the 4th and reported a rancher on the WY/UT border reported seeing 2 uncollared black wolves and that several sheep were attacked in a fenced pasture on private property. The area was west of Highway 30 between Cokeville and Sage, WY. Investigation showed that 2 wolves attacked and wounded 2 sheep that had to be euthanized. This is an area with intensive agriculture and sheep operations and little natural prey. Options considered including radio-collaring and releasing the wolves on site, capture and relocation, and lethal removal. The potential for additional problems in that area where almost certain and there are no relocation sites for depredating wolves, so the 2 yearling male wolves were killed that afternoon. The sheep depredations and control occurred solely in Wyoming. Agency cooperation and communication was excellent between the Service, UT and WY WS, UT DNR and WY G&F, and Yellowstone NP.

Research

Yellowstone National Park’s late winter 30-day wolf predation study began on March 1.

mailto:mike_jimenez@fws.gov

Information and education and law enforcement

Doug Smith gave a presentation for a 15 member wolf watching class in the Lamar Valley on the 4th.

On the 6thth Bangs, talked to about 75 students and visitors at an Honors Forum "Issues" lecture series at Weber State University [Ogden, UT].

Tom Meier et al. finished the 2002 annual interagency wolf report. The report will be distributed both in the mail [when printed in a month] and online [next week]. Nice job Tom! Special thanks to all our cooperators for writing their sections and helping to get the report out in a timely manner.

On the 6th, Jimenez met with the Fremont County Predator Board. About a dozen people attended. He also gave a lecture to about 15 students in an Ecological Issues class at Teton Science School.

The Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a ruling on the last of the litigation against the wolf recovery program on 02/25/03. The case involved the Diamond G Ranch, Inc, a Wyoming Corporation. Gale Norton, Sec. Interior and USFWS. The case was an appeal of a U.S. District Court for Wyoming ruling that the wolf recovery program did not violate the Fifth Amendments takings provision or the regulations promulgated under the Endangered Species Act. The Appeals Court affirmed the District Court ruling which dismissed the Diamond G’s takings claims and the ESA claims. This is another big legal win for the DOJ, FWS, and wolf recovery program.

The CENTRAL ROCKIES WOLF PROJECT is pleased to announce that registration has begun for the WORLD WOLF CONGRESS 2003 - BRIDGING SCIENCE AND COMMUNITY, to be held at the Banff Centre (Banff, Canada) from September 25-28, 2003. Please visit www.worldwolfcongress.ca for complete information. Abstracts are due by March 15, 2003.

The 2003 North American Interagency Wolf Conference, is April 8 - 10, and will be held at Chico Hot Springs, Pray, MT. The theme this year is wolf/ungulate relationships. The registration website is https://keysecure.com/forwolves.org/confer2003.html

The Service's weekly wolf report can now also be viewed at the Service's Region 6 web site at http://westerngraywolf.fws.gov. This report is government public property and can be used for any purpose. Please distribute as you see fit.

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