Wolf locations for this report were obtained from flights conducted between 17 and 18 June 1998.
All wolves (except lone wolf B-14-M currently in NW Montana) being monitored via radio-telemetry remain within the experimental area on national forest land.
Six of 7 Idaho wolf packs produced pups in 1997. Six additional wolf pairs have established home ranges in Idaho, some of which may be raising pups this summer. Three of these wolf pairs include wolves that either were not part of the translocated experimental population, or are wolves with failed radio collars. Aerial wolf pair surveys indicate up to 8 pairs and packs of wolves may be raising pups this summer. Ground crews are currently conducting initial ground assessments of all suspected breeding pairs. Updated information regarding numbers of breeding pairs will be available after this initial assessments has been completed. Final determination of the number of breeding pairs will be reported at the end of the field season when accurate and complete information is available.
Summer field efforts were initiated on 18 May. Nez Perce Tribal crews, assisted by the University of Idaho, and Wildlife Services will be documenting wolf reproduction, working closely with cooperators and landowners on the ground through the livestock grazing season, and implementing a summer long wolf capture and collaring effort
North of the Salmon River
Two wolf packs and 2 wolf pairs occur in this area. In addition, 3 lone wolves frequent habitats north of the Salmon River.
Panhandle, Clearwater and Lolo National Forests
Wolf pair B-20-F and B-31-M were located together in the upper St. Joe River drainage.
The Kelly Creek pack including wolf B-15-F was located north of Lolo Pass on the Lolo National Forest. The alpha male of the Kelly Creek pack was captured and fitted with a radio collar. A long standing mystery has finally been solved as the identity of the alpha male is now known. As suspected, the alpha male of the Kelly Creek pack is wolf 9013, the Kelly Creek male, which was collared in 1990 by wolf researcher Diane Boyd-Heger working for the University of Montana's Wolf Ecology Project. Wolf 9013 was an adult member of the Camas pack in Glacier National Park at the time he was captured and collared. In 1991, 9013 traveled south and west through western Montana where he was monitored by wolf researcher Mike Jimenez, studying the Nine Mile wolf pack. Mike Jimenez and others continued to monitor 9013 as he established a territory in the Kelly Creek country of Idaho from the beginning of 1992 until his radio failed during late summer of 1993. During this time wolf 9013 became known as the Kelly Creek wolf. B-15-F and 9013 paired in 1995, produced their first litter of pups in 1996, and may be raising their second litter this summer.
B-11-F was located in the Lolo Creek drainage, Montana. B-07-M was not located.
Wolf B-12-M was located in the upper Fish Creek drainage, in Montana.
Nez Perce National Forest
Wolf B-33-M was located in the Lake Creek drainage of the Gospel Hump Wilderness.
Female Boulder Pack yearling wolf B-43-F was last located on 4 June along the Main Salmon River in the Yellow Pine Bar area.
The Selway pack wolves continue to move widely within their home range. They were last located in the headwaters of the Noble Creek drainage.
South of the Salmon River
Five wolf packs and 4 wolf pairs occur in this area. All five packs produced wolf pups in 1997; two of these packs also produced pups in 1996.
Payette National Forest
The Chamberlain Basin pack was located in the Lodgepole Creek drainage in Chamberlain Basin.
Wolf B-22-F was located in the Monumental Creek drainage.
Salmon-Challis National Forest
Wolves B-30-F, B-28-M were located in the headwaters of the South Fork of the Salmon River. We could not locate B-19-M.
The Jureano Mountain wolf pack was located in the Haystack Mountain area.
We did not locate wolf B-24-M.
The Moyer Basin pack was located in the Silver Creek drainage.
Wolf B-35-F and Wolf B-18-M were located in the Warm Spring Creek drainage.
Sawtooth National Forest
The Stanley Basin pack was located on the east side of Stanley Basin.
Wolf B-36-F was located in the headwaters of the East Fork of the Salmon River.
B-02-M was not located.