Wolf Monitor, Current News, Sightings, Legal Action, Wolf Pack Maps, Photos     By News Reporter Cat Urbigkit • Pinedale Online!

 Wolf News

Welcome to Wolf Watch!        |     Books by Cat Urbigkit
Wyoming news reporter Cat Urbigkit lives in the heart of wolf country, near Big Piney, Wyoming, a few hundred miles south of Yellowstone National Park. As a news reporter, rancher, researcher and Wyoming resident, she has followed the wolf issue for many years and written many articles on the topic, as well as an upcoming book on the history of wolves in Wyoming.
   The goal of this website is to present up-to-date, accurate information about what is happening with wolves, focusing on wolves in the Rocky Mountains, but referring to wolf happenings outside our region when there is some local relevance. Rather than an agenda-driven advocacy site, this is the place to be for the facts about wolves, with a strong focus on what’s happening on the ground.
   We invite those living in areas inhabited by wolves to contact Cat with news tips, photographs, or other information. We also invite those who want to support this endeavor to sign on as sponsors, and for our readers to support those sponsors.

2016 Wolf Watch Story Archive
2015 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2014 Wolf Watch Story Archive
2013 Wolf Watch Story Archive
2012 Wolf Watch Story Archive
2011 Wolf Watch Story Archive
2010 Wolf Watch Story Archive
2009 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2008 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2007/2006 Watch Wolf Story Archive

3/27/17: Wolf News Roundup 3/27/2017
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) Wolf news from Arizona, Nevada, Vancouver Island and Switzerland. A new study for Arizona reports that the success of the Mexican wolf recovery across Arizona and New Mexico hinges more immediately on maintaining social tolerance than on genetic diversity. California officials have lost track of the Shasta wolf pack, but Nevada officials have confirmed that the state has confirmed wolf presence for the first time in nearly 100 years, and might be from the lost California pack. After a wolf was seen in an area of Nevada some 20 miles from the California border, scat was collected on site. Lab work determined that the lone male wolf was genetically linked to the adult pair of wolves that whelped near California’s Mount Shasta in 2015. British Columbia media report that a popular Vancouver Island beach has been closed after a wolf repeatedly behaved in an aggressive manner around humans. The beach was closed after a wolf attacked a leashed dog, the second attack this week. Although wolves are a protected species in Switzerland, government officials have granted approval for hunters to kill a specific wolf, M75, after genetic testing linked the wolf to the death of more than 40 sheep in the southern part of the country. According to media reports, local authorities can authorize the killing of wolves that kill more than 25 livestock....... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

3/20/17: Wolf News Roundup 3/20/2017
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) Washington’s wolf population grew by 28 percent last year, with a minimum population of 115 wolves in 20 packs, with 10 breeding pairs. Animal damage control officials in Oregon are pulling M-44 sodium cyanide devices designed to kill coyotes after a wolf was unintentionally killed in the northeastern portion of the state. The Pacific Legal Foundation, representing the California Cattleman’s Association and California Farm Bureau, has filed a lawsuit contesting the state of California’s listing of the gray wolf as an endangered species in the state. The Arizona Livestock Loss Board has instituted a four-step process for obtaining reimbursement for wolf depredation of commercial cattle...... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

3/12/17: Wolf News Roundup 3/13/2017
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) Wildlife officials have confirmed that an animal shot last month in northeastern North Dakota was a gray wolf, and charges are pending against the shooter. With eight breeding pairs of wolves, Eastern Oregon wolf managers can now move into a new phase of wolf management, allowing more lethal take of wolves involved in livestock depredations or impacting big game populations. State wildlife officials are searching northern California for a missing wolf pack. Norway officials are moving to allow the country’s wolf packs to be reduced from nine packs down to four to six packs...... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

3/7/17: Waiting on wolf delisting
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) The Wyoming Game and Fish Department has issued a press release about wolf delisting:....On March 3, 2017 a three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia recognized Wyoming’s wolf management plan should be upheld. This comes after, the US Fish and Wildlife Service removed Wyoming’s wolves from the protection of the Endangered Species Act through a delisting rule in 2012. In 2014, a federal District Court judge reinstated federal protections for wolves and vacated the 2012 rule because the judge believed that population commitments Wyoming made in its wolf management plan needed to be in regulation or statute. As a result, the judge ruled that the US Fish and Wildlife Service acted arbitrarily in delisting Wyoming’s wolves. Wyoming and the federal government appealed that decision. "In the 3-0 opinion that came out on March 3rd, the Court concluded that US Fish and Wildlife Service did not act arbitrarily when it determined Wyoming’s Wolf Management Plan was sufficient to maintain a recovered wolf population upon delisting…. Wyoming will not take over management immediately because of the legal process involved….So, until that process plays out Game and Fish reminds people that wolves are still considered protected under the Endangered Species Act and under federal management. This also means the take of wolves in Wyoming remains suspended…. Assuming that no petition for rehearing is filed with the court, the earliest wolf delisting could take effect would be April 17th..... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

3/6/17: Wolves still protected, for now
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) Although a federal appeals court has affirmed the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service decision to remove federal protections from wolves in Wyoming, that ruling is not anticipated to change wolf management in the state until April 17th at the earliest. Friday’s decision provides for murky legal waters as to the next step in turning the federal wolf program over to state officials. The court decision affirmed the FWS 2012 rule delisting wolves in Wyoming, but federal appeals court rules provide for a 45-day window to allow a "petition for a panel rehearing" which would then be acted upon by the court. Seeming to err on the side of caution, federal wildlife officials appear to be using that time frame to work with state officials in preparing to hand over wolf management to the state..... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

3/3/17: Wyoming wolf delisting affirmed
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) The United States Court of Appeals issued a ruling this morning that a lower court was wrong in vacating the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s 2012 decision to delist wolves in Wyoming, and also found that the lower court’s determination that Wyoming’s wolf plan did not contain "adequate regulatory mechanisms" was also wrong. The U.S. Secretary of the Interior and the State of Wyoming had appealed the lower court ruling to the appellant court, winning the ruling Friday. Although the appeals court has affirmed the FWS 2012 delisting rule, the next steps are not yet clear. FWS reports that their solicitors are reviewing the decision and will release guidance on how wolf delisting in Wyoming, and state management of wolves, will proceed..... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

2/28/17: Wolf News Roundup 2/28/2017
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) Wolf news from around the world: Efforts to fast-track a vote on removing wolves in the Great Lakes region and Wyoming from the Endangered Species list; wolves in Finland; efforts to prohibit wolf trapping and hunting near Denali National Park.. .... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

2/22/17: Wolf News Roundup 2/22/2017
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) The Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife and University of Washington are teaming up to study how eight years of wolf population growth in the northeastern part of the state is affecting deer and elk, as well as mountain lions. The study will take place in a multiple-use area where hunting, logging and livestock grazing also occur. In Oregon, a proposal to allow public hunters to kill "problem wolves" – instead of having state agency employees do the task –is drawing controversy. Also more wolf news. .... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

2/9/17: Wolf News Roundup 2/8/2017
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) Wolf managers and livestock producers in the state of Washington have been photographed, stalked, and even received death threats after state officials began lethal removal of problem wolves that repeatedly preyed on livestock last year. The situation became so unnerving that a wolf biologist in charge of the state’s wolf policy he put his family up in a hotel as a safety precaution..... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

2/9/17: Grizzly/wolf food competition examined
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) A Wisconsin researcher and his colleagues have released a new paper alleging that the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources has vastly underestimated the number of wolves that die from illegal poaching. The paper, Gray Wolf Mortality Patterns in Wisconsin from 1979 to 2012, was published in the Journal of Mammalogy, with Adrian Treves as the primary author..... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

2/9/17: Underreporting Wolf Poaching
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) A Wisconsin researcher and his colleagues have released a new paper alleging that the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources has vastly underestimated the number of wolves that die from illegal poaching. The paper, Gray Wolf Mortality Patterns in Wisconsin from 1979 to 2012, was published in the Journal of Mammalogy, with Adrian Treves as the primary author..... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

2/1/17: California wolf legal challenge
(By Pacific Legal Foundation) The California Fish and Game Commission has unjustifiably adding the gray wolf to the state’s list of "endangered" species, argues a lawsuit filed by Pacific Legal Foundation on behalf of the California Cattlemen’s Association (CCA) and the California Farm Bureau Federation. The lawsuit challenges the commission’s listing of the gray wolf under the California Endangered Species Act. The listing took effect on January 1, 2017, a little over a year after a divided commission approved it on a controversial 3-1 vote.... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

2/1/17: Great Lakes wolf delisting
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) Minnesota Public Radio reporter Dan Kraker takes a look at the possibility that wolves in the Great Lakes states and Wyoming will be removed from federal protection due to an act of Congress. While some view wolf recovery as an endangered species success story, others claim that state wildlife agencies can’t be trusted with wolf management. The wolf population in the region is already triple the size called for in wolf recovery plans..... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

1/23/17: Wyoming wolf update
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) has been busy placing radio collars on wolves throughout western Wyoming. With 36 new collars in place, more than 80 wolves in the state are now wearing the collars. The collars are a tool for monitoring the wolf population, and can be key resource for quickly locating wolf packs that are involved in livestock depredations..... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

1/23/17: Celebrity wolves
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) Emma Marris’s essay "Why OR7 is a celebrity" in the current edition of High Country News uses the tale of an individual wolf to explain the novelty factor when wolves expand their range and move into a new area. Marris’s piece notes the fund-raising factor is upped when people connect emotionally to individual animals, but appeals focused on larger groups are not as effective. Marris noted that while OR7 is famous in Oregon, the novelty is wearing off as the wolf population increases.... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

1/21/17: Judge orders information destroyed
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) U.S. District Court Judge Lynn Winmill of Idaho has ordered the destruction of information gained as the result of placing radio collars on wolves and elk in an Idaho wilderness area. The destruction of data was requested by Wilderness Watch, Friends of the Clearwater, and Western Watersheds Project. "the injury to the plaintiffs’ interest in the wilderness character of the Wilderness Area is real and cannot be compensated for by a monetary award.” “The only remedy that will directly address the ongoing harm is an order requiring destruction of the data – no monetary award or other such sanction will alleviate the ongoing harm. Thus, the Court will issue a mandatory injunction ordering the Director to destroy the data received on the elk and wolves collared in this project." ... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

1/18/17: Wolf News Roundup 1/18/2017
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) U.S. Congressional members from the Great Lakes states and Wyoming have teamed up in a bipartisan effort to remove wolves from federal protection in those states, and to prohibit legal challenges to this action. In New Mexico, the federal Interior Department is asking the Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals to overturn a federal judge’s decision barring the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service from releasing captive-bred Mexican wolves into New Mexico without approval from the state wildlife agency ... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

1/11/17: Cheney pushes wolf delisting
(By U.S. Representative Liz Cheney press release) U.S. Representative Liz Cheney introduced a bipartisan bill on Tuesday with fellow co-sponsors Congressman Collin C. Peterson (MN-07) and Congressman Sean Duffy (WI-07), to remove the gray wolf from the list of threatened and endangered species under the Endangered Species Act. The bill will also prohibit judicial review of this delisting determination. ... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

1/6/17: Wolf News Roundup
(By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!) A Swedish court has allowed the hunting of 24 wolves to begin in early 2017, despite appeals from environmental groups. A red wolf has been illegally shot and killed inside a national wildlife refuge in North Carolina, and federal wildlife officials are offering a $2,500 reward for information about the incident, while pledges from environmental groups have upped the reward to $16,500. Michigan Governor Rick Snyder signed legislation making wolves in the state a game animal, making an end-run around ballot initiatives that would keep the animals from being hunted. .... (Click on the link above for the complete story.)

 

2016 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2015 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2014 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2013 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2012 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2011 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2010 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2009 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2008 Wolf Watch Story Archive

2007/2006 Wolf Watch Story Archive


GENERAL INFO

General Info about wolves

LEGAL

Recovery Plan
Reintroduction
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Delisting

WOLF PACKS

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This Wolf page is a special feature of Pinedale Online! www.PinedaleOnline.com.Wolf header photo by National Park Service.