Wyoming Gray Wolf Recovery Status Report
From: USFWS Wyoming Wolf Recovery Project Leader, Jackson, WY
Subject: Status of Gray Wolf Management in Wyoming and the NRM
WYOMING WOLF WEEKLY- Dec 7 through Dec 18, 2009
Web Address – USFWS reports (past weekly and annual reports) can be viewed at http://westerngraywolf.fws.gov . Weekly reports for Montana and Idaho are produced by those States and can be viewed on the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks website (http://fwp.mt.gov/wildthings/management/wolf/default.html) and Idaho Department of Fish and Game website (http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/wildlife/wolves). All weekly and annual reports are government property and can be used for any purpose. Please distribute as you see fit.
The Rocky Mountain Wolf Recovery 2008 Annual Report is available at: http://westerngraywolf.fws.gov .
Delisting Litigation Status
A hearing on the preliminary injunction request was held in Federal Court in Missoula, MT on August 31. Oral arguments were heard from the plaintiffs, U.S. Department of Interior, Montana, and Idaho. On September 8, the Federal Court denied the preliminary injunction motion filed by Defenders of Wildlife and others to stop the 2009 regulated gray wolf hunts in Idaho and Montana. However, in issuing his order, the judge indicated that his preliminary review of the overall delisting case raised questions about Service’s approach of conferring ESA protections to a “significant portion of the range” of a species, as opposed to designating the entire species as a threatened or endangered species. A hearing date for oral arguments has not been set, but is expected to be soon after legal briefs are completed in late January 2010.
Official wolf population estimates for Wyoming will be published in the Annual Report. As of November 2009, preliminary estimates for Wyoming outside Yellowstone National Park (YNP) are >200 wolves in >30 packs (19-21 breeding pairs). Inside YNP there are approximately 104 wolves in 14 packs (6 breeding pairs).
Figure 1. Wolf population growth in WY (outside YNP): 2000-2009
Figure 2. Number of wolf packs¹ and breeding pairs² in WY: 1999-2009.
¹ Wolf Pack = >2 wolves traveling together using a defined home range.
² Breeding Pair =1 adult male and 1 adult female with > 2 pups surviving through December 31st.
Idaho: Wolf hunting season is open in parts of Idaho with a statewide quota of 220 wolves. As of 12/3/09, 113 wolves were legally harvested. The Idaho Fish and Game Commission extended the wolf hunting season until March 31 in units where quotas have not been reached. For the most current harvest status information, call 1(877)872-3190. The IDFG website that summarizes wolf hunting in Idaho can be viewed at http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/hunt/wolf/quota.cfm
No recent depredations or controls to report at this time.
Table 1. Confirmed livestock depredations in WY: 2000 - 2009.
|# of wolves controlled||2||4||6||18||29||41||44||63||46||30|
Nothing to report at this time.
Law Enforcement and Related Activities
Nothing to report at this time.
Outreach and Education
OLYMPIA, WA —The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) will continue to accept public comments for another month on a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for a state wolf conservation and management plan. The plan can be viewed at http://wdfw.wa.gov/wildlife/management/gray_wolf/. Comments can be submitted through 5 p.m., Friday, Jan. 8, electronically at http://wdfw.wa.gov/wildlife/management/gray_wolf/mgmt_plan.html, by FAX to (360) 902-2946, or by U.S. Mail to: WDFW SEPA Desk, 600 Capitol Way N. Olympia, WA 98501-1091.
To request an investigation of livestock injured or killed by wolves, please contact the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture Wildlife Services at (307)261-5336.