Wolf Program Updates
May 22, 2013
Minam Pack female collared
On May 16, 2013 ODFW successfully trapped and GPS-collared an adult breeding female of the Minam Pack. The 81-pound wolf was in excellent condition and is the first radio-collared wolf in this pack. The Minam Pack was first discovered in 2012 and early information about the pack suggested that it occurred mostly within the Eagle Cap Wilderness. Managers expect that the GPS collar will allow better understanding of the pack’s use areas. This marks the 20th radio-collared wolf in Oregon.
Confirmed depredations by Imnaha pack
On May 15, 2013 a yearling cow was confirmed by ODFW to have been killed by wolves of the Imnaha pack. Evidence of at least two wolves was found at the site. In addition, GPS locations from OR4’s radio-collar confirmed that OR4 was present. On May 10, 2013 ODFW also confirmed that a small calf in the same general area had received wolf bite injuries on a hind leg. The calf was expected to survive. These are the third and fourth confirmed wolf depredation incidents by the Imnaha Pack in 2013.
Loss of collared Wenaha female
On May 11, 2013 a 55-pound yearling female wolf (OR19) from the Wenaha pack was trapped and released with a GPS radio-collar. She was caught in the Sled Springs unit where some members of the Wenaha pack have been located for more than a month. The capture went well and the wolf appeared healthy and unharmed. Following the capture, the movement data from the wolf appeared normal. However, late on May 17 the collar sent out a mortality message – a message which indicates the collar had been stationary for an extended period of time. Radio collar mortality signals do not always mean mortality, but on Sunday May 19 ODFW investigated the area and found that the wolf had died. The cause of death is unknown, but we do not suspect foul play at this time. Even so, the animal is being independently examined in an effort to learn more of the cause of death.
New pair of wolves in Mt Emily Unit
A new pair of wolves was discovered in the eastern portion of the Mt Emily Unit (Union County) in early April 2013. Field surveys which immediately followed, combined with information shared by area landowners showed that the pair – probably a male and female – visited several private land areas near the Grande Ronde Valley. More recently, however, evidence (tracks) has shown that the pair may have moved to higher elevation forest areas. Continued survey efforts will be conducted to gather more information on the pair.
Sheep depredation in northern Umatilla County
On May 21, ODFW confirmed that 6 sheep were depredated by wolves which resulted in four dead (3 lambs, 1 ewe), one injured (ram), and one missing (lamb). Wolf tracks were found in the pasture of the dead sheep, and radio-collar data showed that at least one wolf of the Umatilla River Pack was in the area on the night of the depredation. Evidence gathered showed a similar pattern of attack as the depredation events in 2012 in this same general area.
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