Gray Wolf Recovery
Weekly Progress Report

Week of April 21, 1997

Monitoring

All wolf packs remain localized within their normal home ranges, none were located outside expected areas. Female wolf #39 which has ranged far north of Yellowstone in the past has not been located for a month. The Rose Creek pack has 2 maybe 3 dens, the Leopold, Druid, Soda Butte (near Heart Lake), Dubious, and Mammoth threesome, all appear to have a den. The Crystal and Thorofare packs have not appeared to have denned yet. Six of the pups that were recently released from the Nez Perce pen were located along the Park boundary near Mammoth. Another pup is hanging out near cattle in the Cinnabar drainage, local ranchers were notified. The remaining pup is traveling with two other wolves that range from the area around the Nez Perce pen to West Yellowstone.

Wolf pairs in Idaho continue to localize and there are about 13 pairs that could potentially produce pups this spring. Two pairs (5 radio-collaredwolves) are north of the Salmon River - on the Bitterroot and Clearwater National Forests. There are 21 radio-collared wolves in at least 8-9 potential breeding pairs south of the Salmon River - on the Payette, Boise, Sawtooth, Salmon-Challis National Forests. It appears that several radio-collars have failed or that the wolves have disappeared, making it difficult to determine if several of the apparently unmarked wolves accompanying radio-wolves are naturally dispersing wolves or are reintroducedwolves whose radios have failed. The tribe will attempt to replace some collars this summer and fall.

The Nez Perce Tribe is hiring 6 field biologists this summer and is accepting applications now. For further information please contact Timm Kaminski or Curt Mack (208)843-7372 in Lapwai, ID.

Livestock Depredations & Management (control)

The Big Hole male (#07), was placed back in the pen in central Idaho with his mate (#11). The pen was re-enforced to make it more secure. The pair will be released north of the Lochsa River just south of I-90, in the Idaho experimental area later this month.

Research

A paper by Bangs, Fritts, Fontaine, Brewster, Niemeyer, and Kaminski titled "Restoration of gray wolves in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming" was accepted for presentation at The Wildlife Society 1997 Annual Conference at Snowmass, Colorado, Sept. 25, 1997.

The Nez Perce Tribe will hold the first of three meetings to coordinate wolf research in Idaho in Missoula on May 9 or 10.

Information, Education & Law Enforcement

A wolf-livestock cooperative meeting was hosted by the Nez Perce Tribe in Salmon on April 2. It was a very positive meeting. Another meeting will be held in Emmet the week of April 22.

Bangs and Phillips discussed the potential for wolf reintroduction to Olympic National Park in Washington state on April 17 and 18 at a meeting hosted by Congressman Norm Dicks and Defenders of Wildlife. The meeting was attended by about 80 people including widespread media coverage. Mission Wolf conducted a noon presentation on the 19th.

Bangs will meet with the Wyoming Game and Fish Commission in Casper, WY on April 28. The Wyoming state wolf management plan is under going public review, including public meetings, from now until May 15, 1997. As usual, the "sides" seem harsh and polarized.

The weekly wolf report can now be viewed at the Service's Region 6 web site at www.r6.fws.gov/wolf.

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






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