Category Archives: Wolf News
The story of Isabelle, a lone wolf who lived most of her life on Isle Royale in Lake Superior, is not a happy tale. In fact, there isn’t much happiness at all among the little band of wolves on Isle Royale.
Wolves first came to the island over the wintery ice back in the 1930’s and 40’s when it was common for the lake to freeze solid. But as temperatures have slowly climbed, it has become rare for the great lake to freeze, and the wolves of Isle Royale became landlocked and isolated. As a result, they have had no choice but to inbreed.
At their peak there were as many as fifty healthy wolves on the island, but over the years that number slowly dwindled down to ten. Then Isabelle left. And now there are nine.
The wolf hating governor of Idaho signed a bill into law which is designed to kill wolves until they have been pushed back to the minimum number allowed before being relisted under the Endangered Species Act.
Estimates now put the wolf population in Idaho at around 500 – 600 wolves. This bill, now law, hopes to kill all but 150, the minimum allowed by federal law. The law creates a ‘Wolf Control Board’ with members including employees of the state Fish and Game departments, hunters, cattle ranchers, and others appointed by the governor. This board will plan and implement a number of lethal control methods to kill wolves.
Other than Colorado (which has zero wolves), Idaho contains more undeveloped forested land than any other state in the lower 48. This vast wilderness area is home to an estimated 3,000 mountain lions, 20,000 black bears and 45,000 coyotes.
At the end of federal protection, the wolf population in Idaho peaked at around 1,000, a low number compared to the other top predators. After wolves were delisted in 2011 and wolf hunting and trapping became legal, the population plummeted to it’s current number of 500 – 600.
Read More at The Wild Life News