Idaho Wolf Update
June 15 1999

Gray wolves identified in these updates are referenced as B-XX-Y. The B identifies the wolf as a central Idaho animal, numbers identify individuals, and the Y indicates male (M) or female (F).

Monitoring

North of the Salmon River

Panhandle, Clearwater, and Lolo National Forests

The Snow Peak pack including alpha pair B-20-F and B-31-M continues to move within the upper St. Joe drainage and North Fork of the Clearwater drainages. Because alpha female B20 has not localized her movements, it is still undetermined whether this pack has reproduced this year. She was last located in upper reaches of the North Fork of the Clearwater River, above the Cedars.

The Kelly Creek pack including alpha wolves B-15-F and 9013-M continued to travel within the Kelly Creek drainage. Most recently, all collared pack members except for B48, were located together in the lower end of the drainage. Subadult male wolf B48 has not been located during the month of June. Reproduction has not been confirmed for this pack, although we expect the Kelly Creek pack is raising their third litter this year.

The Big Hole pack including alpha wolves B-11-F and B-07-M continue to use tributaries along the south side of the Lolo Creek. Reproduction has been confirmed for this pack and monitoring crews will continue working to collect reliable pup counts to determine litter size.

Lone wolf B-64-M, relocated from the White Cloud pack during a control action this spring, has not been relocated since his release.

Lone wolf B-65-F, relocated from the White Cloud pack during a control action this spring, was located in the Elk Summit Area.

Lone wolf B-52-M has not been located since last fall.

Wolf R-132 has not been located since 24 April.

Nez Perce National Forest

The Selway pack, including alpha wolves B-05-M and B10-F, are suspected to be denning east of Elk City. This would be their second litter within the past four years.

Bitterroot National Forest

The Bass Creek wolves, discovered this winter, continue to concentrate their movements within the foothills of the Bitterroot Range west of Stevensville, Montana. The origin of these wolves is yet to be determined. Blood samples from the alpha male wolf is being analyzed to determine the origin of this wolf. Reproduction has been confirmed. This is the first confirmed established wolf pack to reproduce in the Bitterroot Valley since the initial translocations of wolves to central Idaho and Yellowstone National Park. This pack has recently depredated on livestock and a control action is ongoing (See Wolf Management and Control).

South of the Salmon River

Payette National Forest

The Chamberlain Basin pack including alpha wolves B-09-M and B-16-F continue to be closely associated and restrict their movements to the eastern portion of Chamberlain Basin. Reproduction has been confirmed for this pack.

The Thunder Mountain pack including alpha female wolf B-22-F and her mate of unknown origin, continue to concentrate their movements within the Middle Fork of the Salmon drainage east of Thunder Mountain. Although collared members of this pack have been loosely associated and moved widely over the past two monitoring flights, we expect this pack has produced their second litter of pups.

Dispersing female wolf B45 continues to confine her movements within the upper Secesh drainage.

Salmon-Challis National Forest

B33 continues to travel within the Landmark pack's territory. He has concentrated his movements between Landmark, Idaho, east to the Middle Fork of the Salmon River. Although we remain hopeful, to date, we have not been able to determine whether B33 is associated with a whelping female wolf.

The Jureano Mountain pack including alpha wolves B-25-F and B-32-M after being fragmented for much of May, have regrouped. Collared subadults members of this pack separated from the adults for much of May. By 1 June, they had rejoined the adults around the den site. Reproduction for this pack has been confirmed.

The Moyer Basin pack including alpha female B-37-F continues to concentrate her movements around her den site in the upper Panther Creek area. Reproduction has been confirmed for this pack.

Dispersing subadult male wolves B40 and B47 continue to travel together. They were last located near Cape Horn, northwest of Stanley, ID.

The Twin Peaks pack including alpha wolves B-35-F and B-18-M have concentrated their movements around their den site within the Frank Church River-of-No-Return Wilderness, west of Challis, Idaho.

Sawtooth National Forest

The Stanley Basin pack including wolf pair B-23-F and B-27-M, have concentrated their movements within the Sawtooth Valley and surrounding country. Reproduction has been confirmed for this pack. During June, the pack moved their pups from the den site to rendezvous sites farther into the White Cloud mountains.

Two dispersing wolves from the Stanley Basin pack were located during June. Two-year old male wolf B49 initially left the pack early this winter. He rejoined the pack early this spring and left again in mid May. He has been located around the Moyer Basin den site with B-37 since early June. Two-year old female wolf B38 dispersed early this winter and was relocated during June in the Chamberlain Basin within the outskirts of the Chamberlain Basin pack's territory.

Adult wolf B-28-M and yearling wolf B-61-F, after spending much of the month of April traveling together, have gone their separate ways. B28 was most recently located in Bear Valley just north and west of Cape Horn. B61 was most recently located on the north face of the Main Salmon River just west of Clayton, Idaho.

The White Cloud pack including alpha female wolf B-36-F have concentrated their activities around the East Fork of the Salmon River. Reproduction is confirmed for this pack.

Research

Nothing new to report.

Outreach

Recovery Program staff continued coordination and outreach efforts with cooperators and interested and affected agencies and private individuals. Program Staff participated and presented at the National Wildlife Federation's Wolf Conference in Troutdale, Oregon. Recovery Program sponsored livestock producer's meeting in Stanley Idaho. Program staff conducted a wolf presentation to the Idaho Department of Land in Stanley, Idaho.

Control

The Montana Wildlife Services initiated a control action after the Bass Creek wolves killed a livestock calf west of Stevensville, Montana. Management options are complicated because this first-year pack includes only two adults and their pups. Ongoing management actions will attempt to relocate the pack in central Idaho.

Repeated sightings of wolves this spring in and around the Challis Creek drainage near Challis, Idaho have been reported to Program staff. In addition, three suspected wolf kills in the area have been reported. Although Wildlife Services has not been able to confirm wolf depredation in this area, the Recovery Program is concerned about continued losses. The Wolf Recovery Program will work closely with area livestock producers to establish the cause of these losses and initial wolf control measures for confirmed wolf caused losses. Cause of death for calves investigated by Wildlife Services could not be determined because most of the carcass had been consumed prior to the investigation. We urge livestock producers who find dead calves to immediately cover the carcass with a tarp to preserve as much evidence as possible and call Wildlife Services as soon as possible. The fresher the evidence the better chance Wildlife Services will have of determining cause of death.








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