Wolf News Roundup 10/1/2018
by Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!
October 1, 2018
The hunting season for wolves in the trophy game area of northwestern Wyoming opened Sept. 1. According to the Wyoming Game & Fish Department, 10 wolves have been harvested as of September 28. The agency set a total quota of 58 wolves in the state’s 14 hunt areas for wolves. There have also been 23 wolves killed in Wyoming’s predator zone so far in 2018.
The National Park Service is in the process of reintroducing gray wolves onto Isle Royale, but during the process of moving wolves last week, one captured wolf died en route. Two wolves captured on Minnesota’s Grand Portage Indian Reservation were successfully released on the island managed by the National Park Service.
Oregon guardian dog killed
The Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife reports that on Sept. 25: "Sometime between 12:00am and 2:00am on 9/24/18, a livestock owner was awakened by the sound of his livestock guardian dog being attacked approximately 400 yards from his residence in a fenced pasture containing his cattle.
He investigated and found his severely injured adult Tibetan Mastiff limping through the field towards his residence. It died at approximately 9:00pm that night."
The dog had at least 25 canine puncture wound and tooth scrape marks throughout its body, and the location of the kill is within the range of the Rogue wolf pack.
On Sept. 28, a Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) marksman shot and killed an adult female member of a wolf pack that has repeatedly preyed on cattle while occupying the Old Profanity Territory (OPT) in the Kettle River Range of Ferry County.
The wolf was one of two pack members spotted that day by a WDFW helicopter crew. The adult wolf is believed to be the breeding female. WDFW previously removed a juvenile wolf from the OPT pack on Sept. 16.
WDFW Director Kelly Susewind authorized "incremental" removal of wolves from the OPT pack Sept. 12 after confirming that one or more pack members killed one calf and injured five others from Sept. 4-7 on a U.S. Forest Service (USFS) grazing allotment.
One day after the first wolf was removed, WDFW confirmed that an adult cow had been killed a few days earlier by wolves in the same general area. Then, on Sept. 21, WDFW confirmed five additional livestock depredations (that likely occurred 5-7 days earlier) by the OPT pack, bringing the total to 12 wolf depredations. The five most recent depredations were confirmed injuries to calves.
The remaining wolves in the OPT pack appear to be an adult male and one juvenile, although the juvenile was not seen during the removal operation this week.
The livestock producer who owns the affected livestock continues to use contracted range riders to monitor his herd, is removing or securing livestock carcasses to avoid attracting wolves to the rest of the herd, is using foxlights at salting locations in high wolf use areas, and is removing sick and injured livestock from the grazing area until they are healed. The majority of the producer’s livestock will be moved off federal grazing allotments to adjacent private grazing lands by mid-October.
WDFW’s approach to incremental removal consists of a period of active operations followed by an evaluation period to determine if those actions changed the pack’s behavior. The department has now entered an evaluation period.
If WDFW documents another livestock depredation and confirms that it likely occurred after today’s action, the department may initiate another lethal removal action following the guidelines of the Wolf Plan and 2017 Protocol.
Wyoming - Wyoming Game & Fish Department
Isle Royale - National Park Service
Oregon - Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife
Washington - Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife
Wolf Watch - By Cat Urbigkit, Pinedale Online!