Gray Wolves in the Northern Rocky Mountains
Mountain-Prairie Region

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- April 26 through May 14, 2010

           
Web Address – USFWS reports (past weekly and annual reports) can be viewed at http://westerngraywolf.fws.gov .   All weekly and annual reports are government property and can be used for any purpose.  Please distribute as you see fit.

2009 Annual Report
The 2009 Interagency Annual Wolf (Canis lupus) Report for the NRM DPS in 2009 can be viewed on-line at http://westerngraywolf.fws.gov .  The Idaho and Montana state sections of the annual wolf report are also available on-line at the websites for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks http://fwp.mt.gov/wildthings/management/wolf/default.html and Idaho Department of Fish and Game http://fishandgame.idaho.gov/cms/wildlife/wolves.  The annual wolf report is composed of five Sections: 1) Montana; 2) Wyoming; 3) Idaho; 4) USFWS overview of dispersal, funding, litigation, and relevant publications; and 5) Tables and Figures of wolf population statistics and wolf depredations. 

Litigation Status
Wyoming: Oral arguments were heard in federal court in Cheyenne, WY on January 29 to address the state of Wyoming’s request that the USFWS accept the Wyoming Wolf Management Plan. A decision from Judge Allen Johnson is pending.

Northern Rocky Mountains: 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 been set for June 15, 2010.  

Monitoring
Telemetry flights have been ongoing to confirm packs that have denned in Wyoming and in Yellowstone National Park (YNP).

Wyoming: >8 packs have denned:
Buffalo                                      Hoodoo
Absaroka                                             Antelope
Beartooth                                             Pinnacle
Chagrin River                                      Sunlight

YNP:  > 9-11 packs have denned:
Quadrant                                              Madison
Black Tail                                            Cougar
Agate                                                   Canyon
Silver                                                   Grayling (probable)
New group in Slough Creek area        Delta (probable)
Molly

Washington: 2 packs appear to be denning:
Lookout (Twisp)
Diamond Packs (NE WA)

YNP: During recent telemetry flights, the Gibbon Meadows Pack (~16-17 wolves) has not been located in their normal home range inside YNP. The pack was located last week 60-70 miles from the park, close to the Idaho-Montana border near Monida Pass. IDFG biologists will continue monitoring the Gibbon Meadows Pack and determine if the pack has denned in the area.

Control
Wyoming: Nothing to report at this time.

Table 1. Livestock depredations and control actions in Wyoming from 2002 - 2010.
       wolf1

 

Oregon: On May 5, an ODFW employee observed four wolves feeding on an approx. 200-lb calf on private land in the Zumwalt Prairie area northeast of Enterprise, OR.  The carcass was examined by ODFW & Wildlife Services personnel and they determined that the calf had been killed by wolves.  One of the wolves observed at the scene was a radio-collared sub-adult from the Imnaha Pack.  A range rider is being deployed in the area in hopes of deterring further attacks.    

Research
Several recent publications on wolves in the NRM include:

Mitchell, M. S., J. A. Gude, D. E. Ausband, C. A. Sime, E. E. Bangs, M. D. Jimenez, C.
M. Mack, T. J. Meier, M. S. Nadeau and D.W. Smith.  2010. Temporal validation of an estimator for successful breeding pairs of wolves (Canis lupus) in the U.S. northern Rocky Mountains.  Wildlife Biology16:101-106.

Smith, D.W., D. Murray, E. Bangs, J. Oakleaf, C. Mack, J. Fontaine, D. Boyd, M. Jimenez, D. Pletscher, C. Niemeyer, T. Meier, D. Stahler, D. Guernsey,  J. Holyan.  2010.  Survival of colonizing wolves in the northern Rocky Mountains of the United States, 1982-2004.  J. Wildlife Management 74:620-634.

Hebblewhite, M., and D.W. Smith. 2010. Wolf community ecology: ecosystem effects of
recovering wolves in Banff and Yellowstone National Parks. Pages 69-120 in M. Musiani, L.Boitani, and P. Paquet, editors. The world of wolves: New perspectives on ecology, behavior, and management.

Law Enforcement and Related Activities   
Nothing to report at this time.

Outreach and Education
The USFWS has posted a term biologist position to work in the Wyoming wolf program in Cody, Wyoming. A job description and instructions on how to apply can be found at on the federal government job website @  http://www.usajobs.gov

On 4/27/10, Jimenez (USFWS) spoke to the Cody Chapter of Wyoming Sportsmen for Fish and Wildlife. On 4/28/10, he spoke at the annual inter-agency meeting of the Jackson Hole Elk Working group.

Further Information
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.

For additional information, please contact:
Ed Bangs (406)449-5225 x204 or Ed_Bangs@FWS.GOV
Mike Jimenez (307)733-7096 or (307)330-5631 or  Mike_Jimenez@FWS.GOV

Last updated: November 8, 2012