this week released its 2016 Wolf Annual Report and a Draft Revised Wolf
documents can be found at www.dfw.state.or.us/wolves.
documents will be presented (for information only, not adoption) at the
upcoming Fish and Wildlife Commission meeting on April 21 in Klamath Falls. The
draft plan will also be presented at a second Commission meeting on May 19 at
the Embassy Suites Portland Airport. Public comment is welcome at both meetings
or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
are some highlights from the Annual Report, which summarizes 2016 wolf
management activities and results of annual winter surveys:
ODFW counted 112 known wolves in Oregon in 2016, up two wolves from 2015.
Counts are based on verified evidence (like tracks, sign, remote camera
photographs, visual observations) and are considered a minimum known
population. Severe winter weather made counting wolves much more challenging
Surveys documented 11 packs and eight of those were breeding pairs.
2016 was the third consecutive year of more than seven breeding pairs in
eastern Oregon which moved the East Wolf Management Zone into Phase 3 of wolf
The wolf population continued to expand in distribution, with new areas of wolf
activity in northeast and southwest Oregon.
Two previously occupied areas of wolf activity have changed, including the
newly named Harl Butte Pack which is using part of the area previously held by
the Imnaha pack.
ODFW radio-collared 11 wolves last year.
Staff monitored collared wolves in ten groups during 2016.
ODFW confirmed 24 livestock depredation events by wolves in 2016, an increase
Seven mortalities were documented during 2016, including three radio-collared
more details, see the Annual Report http://www.dfw.state.or.us/Wolves/docs/oregon_wolf_program/2016_Annual_Wolf_Report_DRAFT_170406.pdf
also released an updated draft Wolf Conservation and Management Plan. The draft
Plan is the result of a year-long review process to evaluate its effectiveness
and address opportunities for improvement.
incorporates the latest science about wolves and includes new sections on
potential conservation threats to wolves and non-lethal measures to prevent
wolf-livestock conflict. It also updates base information about wolf status,
population and distribution, plus management improvements based on actual field
experience with wolves,” said ODFW in a press release.
current review has the benefit of large amounts of Oregon-specific wolf data.
“When the Plan was first developed, Oregon had no known wolves and relied
heavily on information from other states,” said Russ Morgan, ODFW wolf program
coordinator. “This review of the Plan incorporates more information from
Oregon, and adds a great deal of new science about wolves.”
draft Plan maintains the original Plan’s goals and aims to keep its original
intent. The Plan was first negotiated between stakeholders and adopted by the
Commission back in 2005 after ODFW’s largest-ever public process. The draft
Plan offers more details on several policies agreed on in the original
example, the original Wolf Plan allowed controlled take of wolves in Phase 3
only, and only in two specific circumstances; 1) situations of chronic livestock
depredation, or 2) if wolves are determined to be causing declines in ungulate
populations such as deer and elk. This draft Plan does not change that intent,
but does add additional guidelines and specific prerequisites for when this
type of take can occur. The draft Plan also continues the policy of not
allowing general seasons of wolf hunting or trapping in Oregon.
policy issues addressed in the draft Plan include:
The definition of chronic depredation is proposed to become more stringent in
Phases 2 and 3. The current definition is two confirmed or one confirmed and
three attempted depredations with no time period set. The new proposed
definition is three confirmed depredations or one confirmed and four probable
depredations within a 12-month period.
The requirements to use non-lethal measures before consideration of lethal
control of depredating wolves continue.
A citizen advisory group is proposed to improve information sharing and
collaboration between ODFW and stakeholders.
As the wolf population increases, the use of monitoring methods which do not
require capture of wolves (like howling and track surveys, camera surveillance,
aerial surveys) will become increasingly important. Staff will continue to
attempt to collar wolves, but other survey methods will be explored.
presentation of the updated draft Plan during the April and May meetings is
considered informational only; the Draft Plan will not be considered for
adoption at these meetings. A date for final consideration and adoption of the
Plan has not yet been set.
on the Draft Plan may be provided to email@example.com or in-person
at the meetings.
more information on wolves in Oregon, visit www.dfw.state.or.us/wolves