Oregon officials may kill additional wolf from Imnaha pack
Livestock loss confirmed as
Oregon wildlife officials may kill at least one additional wolf
from the Imnaha pack after another livestock animal was confirmed
to have been killed by wolves yesterday.
A 300-pound calf was killed by a wolf on private property
northeast of Joseph, in the same area where previous depredations
have occurred (on May 5 and May 18). The calf was found yesterday
(Sunday, June 5) and confirmed by ODFW and USDA Wildlife Services
as a wolf kill yesterday.
To prevent further livestock losses, ODFW intends to kill at
least one additional uncollared wolf from the Imnaha pack. Lethal
efforts will be limited to private land in the area where previous
livestock losses to wolves have occurred, so only wolves showing an
interest in livestock are targeted.
“We need to be diligent in addressing livestock losses by
wolves, especially when livestock producers have done their part
and undertaken non-lethal efforts,” said Russ Morgan, ODFW wolf
coordinator. “We believe doing so is critical to long-term public
support for wolves and overall wolf conservation efforts.”
Since the Imnaha pack was confirmed to be involved in livestock
losses last year, livestock producers in the area and wildlife
managers have undertaken an extensive effort to avoid livestock
conflict through non-lethal measures.
Landowners in the area have used electrified fladry (flagged
fencing known to deter wolves), removed bone piles that can attract
wolves, and installed Radio Activated Guard (RAG) boxes that emit a
sound when collared wolves draw near. ODFW has been tracking wolf
location information received by radio and GPS collars and a range
rider is monitoring wolves and protecting livestock in the area.
Wolves have also been hazed away from livestock operations. Many
landowners in the area have changed grazing practices to reduce the
risk of depredation by wolves.
The landowner who lost the calf confirmed on June 5 has used
hazing, a range rider and increased human presence around cattle on
Radio collar data indicates that the calf was not killed by one
of the Imnaha pack’s four collared wolves (the breeding pair and
two sub-adult wolves). The collared wolves were not in the area at
the time but south of the location on forested land.
The latest information indicates that the Imnaha pack is
currently made up of at least eight sub-adult or adult wolves,
including the four collared wolves. Based on pack behavior, ODFW
also believes the Imnaha pack had pups this year. Wolf litters are
born in mid-April and average four to six pups.
A fifth radio-collared wolf has not been located for the last
month and may have moved to another area.