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Red Wolf Pups Test Trapping Skills, page 4 Wolf Research Tools, page 9 Wolves Heading to California? page 12 A PUBLICATION OF THE INTERNATIONAL WOLF CENTER SUMMER 2002

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    Red Wolf Pups TestTrapping Skills, page 4

    Wolf Research Tools, page 9

    Wolves Heading toCalifornia? page 12


    Do Something Really This Summer. Visit Us!The International Wolf Center in Ely, Minnesota. Plan your trip to wild wolf country now.

    Wilmeet our Ambassador Pack of wolves including two rare arctic

    wolves enjoy viewing the new wolf enclosure pond and rock landscaping trek through wolf habitat: track, hike, howl or journey to an abandoned wolf den learn about the similarities and differences between wolves and dogs through daily programs in Julyand August romp with the kids in our Little Wolf children's exhibit

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    Cover 4/23/02 4:54 PM Page 1

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    Cover 4/22/02 6:05 PM Page 2

  • 2 As a Matter of Fact

    3 From the Executive Director

    15 International Wolf CenterNotes From Home

    18 Tracking the Pack

    19 Wolves of the World

    24 Wild Kids

    26 Book Review

    27 News and Notes

    28 A Look Beyond

    4Cutting TeethA litter of red wolf pups tested the trapping skillsof a biological technician for the U.S. Fish andWildlife Service’s Red Wolf Recovery Program.

    L e s l i e S c h u t t e



    On The CoverPhoto by William Rideg,

    Kishenehn Wildlife Works

    9A Brief History of Wolf Research: PART IIn the young field of wolf research, each newresearch tool or technique has allowed scientiststo find answers to new questions about wolves.

    S t e v e G r o o m s


    ke E





    . Fish









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    12Gray Wolves Heading to CaliforniaA proposal by wolf advocates to designate a region in NorthernCalifornia as suitable wolf habitat has angered local residents,particularly sheep and cattle ranchers.

    M i c h a e l M c C a b e

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:39 PM Page 1

  • Publications DirectorMary OrtizMagazine CoordinatorCarissa L.W. KnaackConsulting EditorMary KeirsteadTechnical Editor L. David MechGraphic DesignerTricia Hull

    International Wolf (1089-683X) ispublished quarterly and copyrighted,2002, by the International Wolf Center,3300 Bass Lake Rd, Minneapolis, MN55429, USA. e-mail: [email protected] rights reserved.

    Publications agreement no. 1536338

    Membership in the International WolfCenter includes a subscription toInternational Wolf magazine, free admissionto the Center, and discounts on programsand merchandise. • Lone Wolf member-ships are U.S. $30 • Wolf Pack $50 • Wolf Associate $100 • Wolf Sponsor $500 • Alpha Wolf $1000. Canada and othercountries, add U.S. $15 per year for airmail postage, $7 for surface postage.Contact the International Wolf Center,1396 Highway 169, Ely, MN 55731-8129,USA; e-mail: [email protected]; phone: 1-800-ELY-WOLF

    International Wolf is a forum for airingfacts, ideas and attitudes about wolf-related issues. Articles and materialsprinted in International Wolf do not necessarily reflect the viewpoint of theInternational Wolf Center or its board of directors.

    International Wolf welcomes submissionsof personal adventures with wolves andwolf photographs (especially black andwhite). Prior to submission of other types of manuscripts, address queries to Mary Ortiz, publications director.

    International Wolf is printed entirely with soy ink on recycled and recyclablepaper (text pages contain 20% post-consumer waste, cover paper contains 10% post-consumer waste). We encourageyou to recycle this magazine.

    PHOTOS: Unless otherwise noted, orobvious from the caption or article text,photos are of captive wolves.

    2 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    What are the jaw pressureand number of teeth of a wolfcompared to a human’s?

    New Question




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    www.wolf.orgVISIT TODAY!

    How many states currently have knownbreeding packs of wolves?Breeding packs of gray wolves are known to exist in nine states (Alaska,Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Montana, Idaho, Wyoming, Arizonaand New Mexico), but there have been verified sightings of single wolvesin several other states, including Oregon, Washington, North Dakota,South Dakota and Missouri.

    Breeding red wolves exist in North Carolina and several island propagationsites off the Atlantic and Gulf Coasts. ■

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:39 PM Page 2

  • Despite the challenges we are facing in these belt-tightening times—especiallyfor the not-for-profit sector—I am particularly pleased that the InternationalWolf Center is proceeding with several initiatives that will strengthen oureducation work in support of wolf survival.

    Norm Bishop, a highly respected educator, adds to our outreach efforts in the greaterYellowstone region as the International Wolf Center’s Field Representative (see NotesFrom Home, p. 15). Norm’s mission is to provide accurate information on wolf mattersin an arena where opponents of wolf recovery are perpetuating urban (or should Isay rural) myths, especially those involving the wolf’s impact on the elk population.

    Norm’s fact-based articles, talks and letters to editors help keep theheated debate in that region of the country grounded in solid science.

    Also on the western front, the Center (along with representativesfrom the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo, The Denver Zoo, the Pueblo ZoologicalSociety and the Albuquerque Biological Park) joined a newly formedwolf information network for the Southern Rockies. These five organizations have merged their education forces to serve as a clearing-house of scientific information and a forum for diverse viewpoints onthe possibility of wolf recovery in that region. A grant from the TurnerEndangered Species Fund and support from the member organizationswill aid the public’s understanding of the issues as advocacy groups

    press for the wolf’s return. The zoos reach hundreds of thousands of people annuallyand provide an unparalleled education opportunity.

    Closer to home, thanks to recent restricted grants, we will be establishing the posi-tion of outreach educator, based in our Twin Cities office. The goal of the position is tostrengthen our education programs in this population center of the state and build afoundation of support for our outreach beyond the state’s borders. And in a relatedmatter, we are exploring a possible new home for the Minneapolis office. This sitewould give us a more visible face, facilities for conducting workshops and providinginformation to visitors, and a base for our outreach efforts.

    Reading articles about wolves and noting the distortions that Norm Bishop isaddressing in his new role remind me that although we have made great strides in wolfrecovery, the ongoing educational challenges remain. Your support in the form ofmemberships, contributions and even purchases from our online store has helped usweather a challenging period. My sincere appreciation to you for that past support andmy hope that we can count on it in the future as we see these new initiatives enhanceour work on behalf of wolves. ■

    From the Executive DirectorINTERNATIONAL



    Nancy jo TubbsChair

    Dr. L. David MechVice Chair

    Dr. Rolf O. PetersonSecretary

    Paul B. AndersonTreasurer

    Dr. Larry D. Anderson

    Phillip DeWitt

    Thomas T. Dwight

    Nancy Gibson

    Helene Grimaud

    Cornelia Hutt

    Dr. Robert Laud

    Mike Phillips

    Dr. Robert Ream

    Paul Schurke

    Teri Williams


    Walter M. Medwid


    The International WolfCenter supports the survivalof the wolf around the world

    by teaching about its life,its associations with other

    species and its dynamic relationship to humans.

    Educational services and informational resources

    are available at:

    1396 Highway 169Ely, MN 55731-8129, USA


    e-mail address:[email protected]

    Web site:

    I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 3

    Walter Medwid

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:39 PM Page 3

  • Cutting Teeth

    4 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    Cutting Teethb y L E S L I E S C H U T T E


    . Fish






    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:39 PM Page 4

  • I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 5

    This time we strain hard to seesomething, anything—a mound ofnewly turned-over dirt, drag hookmarks or, better yet, a scared-stiff wolfpup poised on the side of the road.Then, suddenly, there is something! I slam on the brakes and pull over. Weare using drag hooks on our traps inlieu of staking them down solid, andthe last thing we want to do is obscurethe drag marks. I get close enough tosee the hole where the buried trap had been and glance back at Amywith a nervousbut ecstatic nod.Along the edge ofthe road are theu n m i s t a k a b l emarks of a dragh o o k s l i d i n gthrough the dirt.Then the markstake a suddenright turn into afallow field.

    We cross thefield, following atrail of pushed-down grass. Thedrag is shapedlike an anchor,and as it moves across the ground, itsnags vegetation until there is a hugeball of grass at the end of the chain.This trail leads us into a myrtle tree stand so dense we have to duck. Acouple of meters away we see the wolf.

    She has wrapped herself aroundthe trunk of a myrtle tree and is lying at its base, watching our everymove. As I approach her, she tucks inher tail and just lies there, waiting.Like a cat with a toy, she bats at the catchpole that I push toward her. She snaps once at the pole for goodmeasure and then becomes passive. I place the catchpole loop around herneck. Then I muzzle her, take thetrap off her and examine her foot. Wepop her into a kennel and tote her to

    the truck. At the end of the day, aveterinarian and the field crew willweigh and measure her, affix theradio collar, vaccinate her, and drawblood samples for heartworm andother blood tests. I dare to hope I canrepeat this success. Maybe the two

    t is winter in northeastern North Carolina. The tourists are gone, the fishing is

    good, and this year’s red wolf pups are old enough to be captured and radio-

    collared. I am the newest addition to the field team working with the U.S. Fish

    and Wildlife Service’s Red Wolf Recovery Program. I am the youngest and currently

    the only female, and I am just learning the art of trapping. Capturing the wolves is

    the primary duty of the field team, so each day is a learning experience for me.

    My opportunity to prove myselfnow stands in front of me onprivate property south of theAlligator River National WildlifeRefuge. During a radio-telemetryflight in the summer, as many aseight pups have been sighted withtheir parents and older siblings.These 9-month-old bundles of joyneed new radio collars, just like theirparents’. We have less than three days to accomplish the trapping, toaccommodate the land manager’sschedule. The pressure is on.

    We set 18 foot-hold traps anddraw a map of their locations. We seea lot of wolf sign, and we hope theseyoungsters, like most inexperiencedwolf pups, will jump right into ourtraps. Three days just isn’t very longto catch a litter of pups. I am going to be first on the trapline in themorning with the help of Amy, ourtrusty intern. It will be my firsttrapline check without one of thesenior biologists. Whatever happens,I will have to handle it and not letanyone down. And people expect meto sleep tonight?

    As we approach the first trap in themorning, our hearts sink. Nothing. A million different scenarios startrunning through my head. Did theanimals move? Could they be sittingon a kill somewhere? Was the trapnot set well? Or were the wolves just not interested and walked on by?Oh well, off to the next trap.

    Leslie Schutte holds a captured red wolf pup.


    . Fish







    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:39 PM Page 5

  • kennel, I realize that some PR work isin order. It turns out the audience is one of the landowners with his sonand some guests touring his land.Bonus! He is impressed. It’s a gooddemonstration of what we are doingand how we are doing it.

    In the next hour, we discover threemore traps missing. The day is wearingon, and I am out of kennels. It’s time to call for reinforcements. Thankfully,my support arrives in under an hour,loaded with extra kennels. We find one pup in a trap near a deep canal,but thankfully the pup is not wet. Awolf dying in a trap from hypothermiain the dangerous December windswould be, to say the least, counterpro-ductive to our mission.

    The other pups have taken thetraps across open fields, leaving littlesign for us to follow and making our

    6 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    kennels in my truck won’t be enough.Better stop these thoughts! I’ll jinxmyself and not catch anything else.

    As I am resetting the trap, a truckcomes into view. It is the landmanager with the news that there is a “good-sized wolf with his foot in atrap in an intersection, gathering acrowd of onlookers.” So much for thejinxing! I have to ask the curiouscrowd to back up away from theanimal so I can get a look at him. Heis a pup much bigger than the femaleand has wrapped himself in full view around a signpost. This wolf isnot a happy camper, and I am nonetoo pleased to have an audience.

    As I work to restrain the wolf’shead, I realize I am straddling a redwolf pup with my back to the crowd,so our audience gets to see our bestsides. Then with the wolf safely in the

    After being radio-collared, this redwolf pup is ready to be releasedfrom the crate.

    We strain hard to see something, anything –a moundof newly turned-over dirt, drag marks or, better yet, a scared-stiff wolf pup poised on the side of the road.

    Sometimes a pup needs to be persuaded to leavethe comfort of the crate.

    Above: Karen Beck (left) and LeslieSchutte try to direct the pup away from the road.

    Opposite: Having found its legs, the wolf pup runs off.

    All photos: Courtesy of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:39 PM Page 6

  • searches long and exhausting. Theteam splits up to make the searchmore efficient. An hour passes beforeI finally see a recently traveled trailheading into the overgrowth liningthe banks of a ditch. It opens up intoa slightly treed area. Where the grassis matted down, it looks as if ananimal has been hung up but hasfreed itself. I follow along the ditch,peering over every couple of feet.Hearing something move, I cross myfingers as I look down into the grassyditch. There I see the rear end of a

    wolf pup whose head is in a clump ofgrass. It reminds me of that classicchild’s game—If I can’t see you, youcan’t see me. I can just hear the pup thinking, “She can’t see me, shecan’t see me.”

    By the time I manipulate the pupup the side of the ditch, I amexhausted. I muzzle and blindfoldhim and press him to the ground.Then I attempt to cover his ears as I yell to let the others know I havefound him. A team member comes toassist me. She helps me pick up the

    pup and put him across my shouldersbecause I am too tired to carry him. I can’t even imagine what I look likecoming out of the brush, a red wolfpup across my shoulders. This is aKodak moment for sure. By the timewe kennel him and rendezvous at the trucks, it is late. The day hasflown by! And this is my job!Someone please pinch me.

    I reset the traps for the night’sactivities with the potential ofcatching three more animals. Thenwe all load up our precious cargoesand caravan back to the office toprocess the fantastic five. By the timewe arrive, it is dark. We unload theanimals and set up to process them. I help with the first couple but thengladly give up my position for a seaton the workbench. As I lean back andwatch the team work, I reflect on thisday and feel a surge of pride. From allthe trap sets, mine have taken fourout of the five pups caught. This is, I learn, a new record. The rookie hasset a record! I am too tired to gloat,but I reserve the right to do it later.

    I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 7

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:39 PM Page 7

  • We finish up and close downshop. The five pups will be spendingthe night with us to keep them out ofthe traps and to increase our chancesof catching the last three pups in the litter. I am dying to get home,take a shower and crawl into bed. Iam determined to be first on thetrapline again in the morning.

    The next morning we release thepups away from the traps in a timber-line, where they will probably lie lowfor the day. Then it’s off to check the line. The first missing trap hasgood drag marks that lead right to apup crouched under some bushes.We quickly kennel her and findanother missing trap. The drag hasleft little sign, so off we go in searchof our lost pup, number 7. We finally

    find her lying in the middle of aflooded area, soaked to the bone. Sheis so cold that we put her in the truckand crank up the heat. As they warmup, wet wolf pups do not smell sogood. I can’t imagine what the insideof that cab smelled like.

    But the dedication has paid off. Inthree whirlwind days, we have caughtseven out of eight pups. Forgotten arethe hours with no food, the rawDecember weather, the worry overthe well-being of the pups. I have “cutmy teeth” and earned the respect andtrust of my teammates. I shouldn’tgloat, but I will. Just a little. ■

    Leslie Schutte works as a biologicaltechnician for the U.S. Fish and WildlifeService’s Red Wolf Recovery Program.

    Jennifer Gilbreath releases a red wolf pupwearing its new radio collar.


    . Fish






    There I see the rear end of a wolf pup whose headis in a clump of grass. It reminds me of that classicchild’s game – If I can’t see you, you can’t see me.

    8 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:39 PM Page 8

  • I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 9

    Wolf research is a young field of science. For many centuries, wolves were seen as a problem to be eliminated rather than asanimals that should be studied. Although wolves have only beenstudied for about seven decades, remarkable new technologies have given

    researchers amazing ways of understanding wolves. Each new research tool or technique has allowed scientists to find answers to new questions about

    wolves. Here is a brief history of research tools and techniques.

    A Brief History of Wolf Research

    P A R T I

    b y S T E V E G R O O M SI l l u s t r a t i o n s b y L u k e E i d e n s c h i n k

    Snow TrackingHISTORY: Snowshoes were developed inprehistory. Sigurd Olson, the Minnesota authorand wilderness advocate, may have been thefirst trained observer to track wolves in winterand publish studies of what he learned abouttheir behavior.

    ADVANTAGES/DISADVANTAGES: Whilesnowshoes are inexpensive, tracking wolves iscostly in terms of the time and energy aresearcher must invest.

    RESEARCH ISSUES : Tracking wolvesallows researchers to see precisely wherewolves travel and to indirectly observe somebehaviors, such as raised-leg urinations.Tracking gives insights into the ways wolveshunt and how they utilize their kills. Now and then a patch of gory snow marks the scenewhere adjacent wolf packs fought for territory.

    Field ObservationHISTORY: Binoculars and spotting scopes are technology arisingfrom Galileo’s work in the 16th century. The first scientist toobserve wild wolves objectively was Adolph Murie, whose TheWolves of Mount McKinley was published in 1944. Murie did his work in what is now Alaska’s Denali National Park, wherewolves could be seen from a long distance by human observers.

    ADVANTAGES/DISADVANTAGES: Wolves live in low densi-ties and move quickly through dense cover during much of theirlives. Because wolves are so elusive and difficult to observe, fieldobservation has historically required great expenditures of time togain a few glimpses of wolves. Two major advantages of this tech-nique are that wolves observed this way behave naturally, and theequipment itself is inexpensive.

    RESEARCH ISSUES: Field observations of wolves in naturalsettings have concentrated on wolf dens, for they are the mostproductive setting for observing wolves. Only when raising pups ata den or rendezvous site does a wolf pack center activities on asingle location. Thus the technique of field observation has mainlyproduced findings about social interactions and pack behavioraround dens.

    (Note: The second part of this article will discuss fresh applications of this traditionalresearch technique, applications that are producing stunning and unanticipated results.)

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 9

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    Foot-hold TrapHISTORY: Foot-hold traps were developed around 1600 and have beenmodified frequently since then. Recent innovations reduce the stress experienced by a live-trapped wolf and decrease the likelihood of damagingthe wolf’s foot.

    ADVANTAGES/DISADVANTAGES: Live-trapping wolves is difficultwork. Beyond that, trapping is both a science and an art. Successful trappingrequires a canny sense of wolf behavior. Live-trapping remains about the onlyway to capture a live wolf for research purposes in areas too forested fordarting or netting by helicopter.

    RESEARCH ISSUES: A live-trapped wolf can be drugged and then quicklyweighed, measured and analyzed for physical condition. Drugged wolves canbe blood-sampled for studies of disease, parasites and condition. The wolf isthen released, usually none the worse for the experience. Because trapping isan antecedent to other techniques, primarily fitting wolves with radio collars,

    the ancient foot-hold trap remains crucial to wolf research in many areas.

    Studying Captured WolvesHISTORY: Wolves have been kept inzoos for centuries, yet the notion thattheir behavior could be studied is a recent one, perhaps dating to five or sixdecades ago.

    A D VA N TA G E S / D I S A D VA N TA G E S :Studying confined wolves is inexpensiveand convenient. Confinement, however,limits the range of behavior that wolvescan exhibit. For example, confined wolvesdo not hunt, kill prey or disperse. The factthat the living situation is artificial createsdoubts about which observed behaviorsare natural and which might be a result ofthe unnatural setting.

    RESEARCH ISSUES: Much can belearned about social interactions andpack dynamics by studying wolves inconfinement. Wolves are wolves, even ifthey live behind fences. Researchersstudying captive wolves must always be careful to try to determine whatbehaviors are being affected by thecaptive situation.

    NecropsyHISTORY: From the 1930s through the 1970s, a major thrust ofthe scientific study of wolves involved examining wolf carcasses.Carcasses were available because of hunting, trapping andpoisoning programs until wolves became protected, althoughwolves illegally or accidentally killed were still studied. Carcasseswere examined for stomach contents, weight, size, condition,parasites, litter size (from examination of reproductive tracts ofwolves that had given birth) and so on.

    ADVANTAGES/DISADVANTAGES: Studying dead wolves ismore convenient than studying living wolves, for obvious reasons.The limitation of this technique is that the study of wolf carcassescannot address most of the important and interesting issues aboutwolf behavior.

    RESEARCH ISSUES: The study of wolf carcasses has taken twomain forms. Early in the history of wolf research, taxonomists —notably E. A. Goldman — categorized wolves into anumber of subspecies (“Arctic wolves,” “buffalowolves” and so forth). Their work relied heavily onmeasurements of wolf skulls and bones. Many of theirfindings have been revised by subsequent research.Scientists continue to learn from the study of wolfcarcasses. It is important today to examine carcasses to assess the health of specific populations of wolves.

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 10

  • I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 11

    Scat AnalysisHISTORY: Researchers have been examining scats, or droppings,since the 1940s.

    ADVANTAGES/DISADVANTAGES: Scat analysis is relativelysimple and inexpensive, although it is a limited technique.

    RESEARCH ISSUES: Scat analysis tells researchers whatwolves have been eating. Although it is a technique that answersjust one question, the question is a critically important one.Seasonal changes in the contents of wolf scats have taught

    researchers importantlessons about the wayswolves depend ondifferent prey animals atdifferent times of year.

    Aerial ObservationHISTORY: Small aircraft became relatively abundant after World War II.Hunters were using small aircraft to hunt wolves in the late 1940s. In theearly 1950s, researchers began hiring small planes for their purposes, oftenemploying the same pilots who flew for hunters. A pioneer in the use ofsmall planes for wolf research was Minnesota’s Milt Stenlund, a former boardmember of the International Wolf Center.

    ADVANTAGES/DISADVANTAGES: Using airplanes in winter enablesresearchers to cover great distances and find wolf packs in rough countrywhere travel by snowshoe would be painfully slow and inefficient. Wolvesthat have never been hunted from the air will ignore planes, even if theybuzz around and follow the pack. Thus, airborne researchers can studywolves behaving normally. Obvious disadvantages to aerial observationsinclude the hazards, discomfort and expense of flying small aircraft.

    RESEARCH ISSUES: Much aerial research has been done on Isle Royale,a national park in western Lake Superior, where wolves have never beenhunted. Wolf pack size can be easily assessed from the air in winter. Airborneresearchers have observed some dramatic predator-prey engagements.

    HowlingHISTORY: Howling to wolves probablydates to the 1940s. By one account,Wisconsin biologists Bill Feeney andClarence Searles were assessing wolfpopulations one winter night in IronCounty. On an impulse, Feeney howled.When that howl was answered by twonearby wild wolves, the men were soalarmed that one of them shinnied up a tree. Howling was later refined as aresearch technique by Canada’s DouglasPimlott and others.

    A D VA N TA G E S / D I S A D VA N TA G E S :Howling is fun and inexpensive, requiringno equipment and no great technique. Itis a legitimate research tool, although onewith a limited range of applications.

    RESEARCH ISSUES: Howling i smainly used to assess wolf populations,particularly to locate den sites that thencan be studied by other means. Howlinghas helped researchers monitor theprogress of wolf restoration by showingwhich formerly empty habitat has beencolonized by wolves. Howling alsoteaches lessons about wolf howlingbehavior. ■

    Editor’s note: Part II of this article will appear in the next issue. It willdiscuss how electronics has revolutionized wolf research, and the dramaticprogress in field observations.

    Steve Grooms has been writing about wolfmanagement since 1976. He is the authorof the book The Return of the Wolf, andserves on International Wolf magazine’sadvisory committee.

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 11

  • 12 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    Sometime soon, perhaps within the next coupleof years, gray wolves will make their way acrossmountains, valleys and streams into NorthernCalifornia looking for new territory. � Wolfexperts believe they’re already on their way.

    This article originallyappeared in the San Francisco Chronicle, Tuesday, February 5, 2002. Reprinted with permission.




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    Gray Wolves Heading toDefenders Seek Protections as Ranchers Howl

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 12

  • I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 13

    The migration is all butinevitable, wolf lovers believe,as inevitable as the push westward by humans searching fornew lives.

    To prepare for the wolves’ stealthyarrival, an environmental group,Defenders of Wildlife, has petitionedthe federal government to designate16 million acres of national forestsand parks in Northern California and southern Oregon as suitable wolfhabitat for study and managementpurposes. They say the area —a swath of land nearly twice the size of New Jersey—could support asmany as 500 gray wolves.

    But the prospect of gray wolves(Canis lupus) returning to landswhere they have been extirpated—trapped and shot—since the early1920s is provoking conniption fits inmany parts of the Klamath-Siskiyouregion of Northern California, partic-ularly among some of the region’ssheep and cattle ranchers.

    Backed by studies by biologists and historians showing that wolvesonce roamed throughout much ofCalifornia, wolf advocates insist theanimals are good for the environment:

    Wolves create balance in the eco-system by, for example, dispatchingcoyotes and aging elk. Additionally,they argue, wolves would be a natural magnet, as they have been at Yellowstone National Park, for eco-tourists hoping at least to hear anauthentic wolf howl or two.

    For some ranchers in theseeconomically depressed areas,however, the wolf is fast establishing

    itself as the icon of their twin tormentors: the faceless federalgovernment and the effete, tree-hugging environmentalists.

    Angry ResidentsResidents are already so angry

    over federal efforts to protect thespotted owl, the coho salmon andtwo species of sucker fish—effortsthey say have hurt their livelihoods—that some are calling for secession.Siskiyou County is sprinkled withsigns proclaiming it the independentstate of Jefferson, a movement withroots in the early 1940s.

    They are in no mood to greet stillanother endangered species into theirmidst, particularly the wolf, whichsome recall their great-granddaddiesgoing to great effort to exterminate.

    Ranchers, in particular, fear thatwolves will turn to their livestock forsurvival, primarily picking off calves.

    “To be honest I think it’s stupid tobring wolves in these parts,” saidHarvey Hagedorn, 67, whose familyhas ranched near Yreka for more than a century. “Wolves need to eatsomething, which is usually deer, but the deer population is already

    way down thanks tothe overpopulation of the cougar,” whichhas been protectedsince 1990.

    Scientists who studywolf migration patternssay sightings of wolves in Washington and in Oregon are clear

    evidence that they are headed into theSouthern Oregon–Northern Californiaregion. In the last few years, environ-mentalists say, at least three wolveshave made their way into easternOregon from Idaho. Two were killedby cars. One was shot, illegally. Thewolves in Washington had made their way down from Canada.

    Environmentalists, worried aboutthe possibility of ranchers and

    hunters shooting the first wolfarrivals to the area, intend to weighin heavily when the U.S. Fish andWildlife Service decides within thenext few months whether to reduceprotections for the gray wolf inCalifornia and other states.

    Growing PopulationThe agency will consider down-

    grading the wolf’s status from endan-gered to threatened, or delisting itentirely in some states, includingCalifornia, from the EndangeredSpecies list. With an estimated 3,500wolves in the lower 48 states, officialssay the species has made a spectacularrecovery in many parts of thecountry, especially in Minnesota andYellowstone National Park.

    But when the wolf shows up onCalifornia’s door, its supporters want awelcome mat of sorts. That is whythey want a 16-million-acre regiondesignated as suitable wolf habitat,coupled with the strongest protectionsunder the Endangered Species Act.Whether they and the wolves will getthem is an issue that will help definerural Northern California’s future.

    “We think the wolf should remainlisted as endangered because we don’tthink the wolf can safely make it toCalifornia and form a viable popula-tion without these protections,” saidNancy Weiss, California species associate for Defenders of Wildlifebased in Sacramento. “The problemis whether humans will toleratethem, whether they will shoot them.”

    The likelihood of that happeningapparently is high, to hear someranchers and farmers talk.

    “These eco-terrorists who proposethese things never think of the consequences—when the ranchersand farmers kill the wolves, there’llbe a big outcry,” Hagedorn said.

    Reimbursement ProgramDefenders of Wildlife has a

    program to reimburse any rancher

    Californiab y M I C H A E L M C C A B E

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 13

  • 14 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    for a documented loss resulting froma wolf kill, but most ranchers say thatisn’t nearly good enough.

    Marcia Armstrong, executivedirector of the Siskiyou County FarmBureau and the Siskiyou CountyCattlemen’s Association, says theproblem is that cattle nowadays arebred to survive and prosper in thelandscape and climate in which theyare raised. Replacement cattle, shesays, interfere with the geneticintegrity of the herd.

    “Our last remaining industry uphere is agriculture, and it is already in trouble,” Armstrong said. “Manypeople here suggest that wolves andmaybe grizzly bears be introducedinto the streets of San Francisco andSacramento.

    It seems like the problems withendangered species are always in therural areas, and people with all theideas about them live 400 miles awayfrom the rural areas.”

    In Yellowstone Park, where 33Canadian gray wolves were trappedand reintroduced in 1995 and 1996amid bitter controversy, ranchers

    and landowners living outside thepark remain on edge, althoughothers are reportedly becoming more relaxed about the program.Today, more than 200 wolves thrivein and around the park.

    “We are not asking that wolves bereintroduced (in Northern Californiaor southern Oregon), by helicopteror truck, from other areas, althoughmany people are interpreting ourpetition that way,” said Weiss ofDefenders of Wildlife. “We are askingthat the area be designated as onegood for wolves and then to dofurther studies to determine whetherthe best way to bring them back is byreintroduction or natural dispersal.”

    Patrick Valentino, executivedirector of the California WolfCenter based in San Diego, added:“Without protection from the federalgovernment, anyone can shootwolves on sight.

    “We think wolves should beallowed to recover naturally in theirhistoric range, but there should alsobe a management plan in place toprotect livestock—and the kids, if thatworries people. But the record showsthat no one has ever been killed oreaten by a wolf in North America.” ■




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    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 14

    Area in pink indicatespotential wolf habitat.

  • Norman A. Bishop, ofBozeman, Montana, hasaccepted the volunteer posi-tion as the International WolfCenter Field Representativefor the greater Yellowstoneregion. Norm will focus hisefforts on providing accurateinformation about wolves in the face of significantmisinformation in the localmedia, in which lettersoften distort the role of thewolf and its impact on preyspecies. In addition to hiswriting, Norm will makepresentations on the subjectof wolves and Yellowstone,and serve as a resource on our wolf-viewing trips to the park.

    People and Wolves at the Minnesota Zoo

    Over 7,000 people attended a very successful WolfWeek event hosted at the Minnesota Zoo withInternational Wolf Center sponsorship last fall.

    Young visitors tried their talents at coloring and craftingwolf masks. For older children and adults, a scavenger huntthroughout the zoo was a highlight. Participants scouredthe exhibits for wolf, raven, trapper and Little Red RidingHood characters played by students from the School forEnvironmental Studies in Apple Valley, Minnesota. Thecharacters asked each participant a question about wolves.When a correct response was given, a card was stamped,and the hunt was continued.

    Ever heard of “Wolf Jeopardy”? Pick a category and levelof difficulty was the name of the game, with many creativewinners. “If I were a wolf, how much would I need to eat at each meal?” was the next question. Weights on a scaleshowed each human carnivore what a heavy wolf meal isreally like: 22 pounds.

    Learning can be fun was the clear goal at this event, accom-plished in grand style. We can hardly wait until next year!


    Notes From Home

    Norm Bishop Joins Center’s Educational Efforts

    I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 15

    Retired from 36 yearswith the National ParkService, Norm served inYellowstone Park as aneducator for 17 years.He received the NationalPark and ConservationA s s o c i a t i o n ’s 1 9 8 8Stephen T. Mather Award,the Greater YellowstoneCoalition’s 1991 Steward-ship Award, and the WolfEducation and ResearchCenter’s Alpha Award. Upon his retirement in1997, Norm received aMeritorious Service Awardfrom the Department of the Interior, and an out-standing performance awardas Resources Interpreter. Heis a co-author of Yellowstone’sNorthern Range: Complexityand Change in a WildlandEcosystem, published byYellowstone National Park in 1997.

    “In the controversialhotbed o f the grea terYellowstone area, Normprovides a critically impor-tant resource in helpingground the wolf debate in science, not mythology,”noted Walter Medwid,Center executive director.

    Norm Bishop competes in Nordicskiing and has won Montana,western region and nationalmasters cross-country skiing age-group championships. For summer recreation, Norm enjoys hiking, running,cycling and canoeing.Do


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    Left to right: Jenny Hall, Brenna O’Gorman, Rachel Brintnall and Laura Luke dressed as a trapper, a raven, LittleRed Riding Hood and a wolf for the Wolf Week scavenger hunt at theMinnesota Zoo.

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 15

  • If it wasn’t for this trip, Iwouldn’t ever have knownany of this [informationabout wolves]. I had a greattime and learned a lot ofexciting things. I hope wecan do this again,” wrote AnnMarie Ratka from Heart ofthe Earth School, NationalCenter for American IndianEducation, Minneapolis,Minnesota. Ann, six other10th-grade students andtheir science teacher, MaryBeth Carpenter, visited theInternational Wolf Centerin January this year.

    Rebecca LaChapelle listeddog sledding as her favoriteactivity. “It was my firsttime, and I really enjoyed it.At first I was kind of scared,but then I got used to it afterabout 10 minutes or so. Ieven got to mush thesled, which meanstake control,and drive the

    16 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g


    Notes From Home

    Heart of the EarthVisits the Center

    Thanks to a Dedicated Volunteer

    An International Wolf Center thank you goes to aspecial volunteer, Chuck Purdham. A retired ministerof the United Methodist Church, Chuck is married and

    has three children. One of a few originalrepresentatives, he has been a volunteerand participant in the Center’s speakers’bureau since 1989.

    “I enjoy teaching. When I add tothat the excitement of talking aboutwolves, it becomes a very satisfying

    experience. It is also gratifyingto see the detailed prepara-tion many teachers dobefore I come,” remarkedChuck. Students andteachers alike enjoy hispresentations, and he isoften invited to return.

    A few of Chuck’smany volunteer activ-ities for the Centerinclude giving camp-fire talks at countyparks, speaking tochildren at schools,speaking at a booth atthe Minnesota State

    Fair and participating inWolfin’ Down books, a

    program at libraries to educate people about wolves. Hisdedication to keeping up-to-date on wolf issues takes himoften to classes, seminars, Web sites and piles of printedinformation.

    Regarding his volunteer experiences, Chuck reflected,“I am pleased to have participated in the expansion ofmeaningful services to the general public during my yearsas a volunteer. It has been a privilege to work with the International Wolf Center staff and tell the story of the wolves.” We at the Center are grateful for Chuck’senthusiasm for education and sharing his knowledge withthe world.

    sled. That was my favoritepart of the activity.

    “My second favoriteactivity was learning aboutthe wolves that live outsidethe Center. They have fivewolves. Their names are

    Andrea Lorek Strauss teachesHeart of the Earth students (left to right) Angela Hanks,Alyssarae Dickenson and RebeccaLaChapelle how to use telemetryequipment to find a radio collar.

    Left to right: Angela Hanks,Rebecca LaChapelleand AlyssaraeDickenson hold aradio collar and thetelemetry equipmentthey used to find it.




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    Chuck Purdam, long-timeInternational Wolf Center volunteer

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 16

  • Lucas, Malik, Shadow,Lakota and MacKenzie. Myfavorite was MacKenziebecause she is a black wolf,and so beautiful. We didn’tget to see Lakota. She’s alower-ranking wolf, whichmeans she gets picked on alot by the rest of the pack.She was also injured twoweeks before we came to theI.W.C., so I think she justneeded time to heal, andwanted to stay away fromthe other wolves.”

    Financial support forparticipation in the programwas given to the schoolthrough a grant from Heartof the Earth Survival, Inc.,and winter clothing wasdonated by Galyan’s ofRichfield, Minnesota. ■

    Major DonorsJohn & Sandra Anderson

    Anonymous Donor, Represented by the US Trust Co. of New York

    M. C. Davis

    Wallace & Mary Lee Dayton

    John J. Doran & Susan F. Doran FamilyFoundation

    Tom Dwight

    Caroline Gabel

    Carol Geis

    Frances Graham & Robert Gumnit

    Robert Halley

    James LeBlanc

    Bruce & Lynn Lutz

    Dave Mech

    Sarah Morris

    Karen Pajari, M.D.

    Ellen Sampson

    Sue Schmitt

    Nathan Snodgrass

    Gary Stielow

    The Harold W. SweattFoundation

    Nancy jo Tubbs

    Turner Endangered SpeciesFund, Inc.

    Joseph & Cynthia Urbano

    Joseph & Shirley Wolf

    In-Kind DonationsJoan Gilman

    Matching GiftsMartha Champagne & IBM Foundation

    Dick Coller & IBM Foundation

    Frances Cone & ING Foundation

    Monica Frytak & IBM Foundation

    Nancy Kay Lyslo & US Bancorp Foundation

    Virginia Minor & IBM Foundation

    Dale Novak & PPG Industries

    Kevin Oliver & United Way of Orange County

    Richard Salz & IBM Foundation

    Gavin Schmitz & MicrosoftMatching Gift Program

    Gloria Sell & UFE Incorporated

    Jesse Wallace & IBM Foundation

    HonoraryIn Honor of Kylee Brockmann:Patty & Robert Thies

    In Honor of Gloria Davenport:Bill Tomlinson

    In Honor of Deb Rusnak:Beverly BaridonMarcy Feller & Gabrielle HannaRaymond GehringKathleen MaruccoGeorge & Carolyn MuhleisenRichard PolhemusOnward RealtyPaul & Elizabeth ZimmermanDavid Zoretic

    In Honor of Ben & Barb Spears:Bonnie Pettijohn

    In Honor of Monica Steele:Chris Steele

    In Honor of Ruth William’s Birthday:Sharon Braswell

    MemorialsIn Memory of Ralph Bailey:James & Janet Shumway

    In Memory of Walt Bannerman:Mr. & Mrs. Robert Hobbs

    In Memory of Winnie Bigelow:Jill & Peter Thelen

    In Memory of Bob Griffy:Lenora Moses

    In Memory of Winfield Haycock:Dick Gould

    In Memory of Christopher Kaiser:James Monge

    Kiana Memorial Fund:Karla Jo Brockway

    In Memory of Jan Sandau:Kathryn White

    In Memory of Jan Volkman:Janice Johnson


    ContributorsThank You!

    I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 17




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    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 17

  • 18 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    Ma n y v i s i t o r sinquire about thedaily care that theInternational Wolf Center’swolves, MacKenzie, Lucas,Lakota, Malik and Shadow,receive. Their care isdefined in the Center’s WolfCurator Manual, whichincludes detailed protocolsfor staffing, training, safety,wolf handling and facilitymaintenance. This protocolabides by federal regula-tions set forth in the AnimalWelfare Act administered by the U.S. Department ofAgriculture (USDA). USDAveterinarians make spotinspections of our facilityand review the Center’sVeterinary Care Plan andthe wolves’ medical recordsand physical condition. TheMinnesota Department ofNatural Resources requiresa permit to display captivewolves , moni tors theexhibit for safe and humaneconfinement, and reviewsprotocols for emergenciessuch as natural disasters.

    As previous articles havediscussed, the wolves at theCenter are socialized tohumans. To maintain thissocialization and monitor thewolves’ health, a minimumof two handlers visit thewolves in their enclosurefour to five times per week.

    Tracking the Pack

    During the visits, handlersinspect each wolf for physical problems, such as bites or scrapes, andexternal parasites, such asticks. Handlers also watchfor behavioral issues andrecord their observations inthe wolf log, which are latersummarized and posted onour Web site at

    We currently have eightpeople involved in the wolfcare program. New wolfhandlers must spend at leastthree months making visitsoutside of the enclosure sothe wolves get to knowthem. After the wolves arefamiliar with the newhandler, thewolf curatorand anotherwolf handlerescort theperson into

    the enclosure. If the wolvesdo not show signs of aggres-sion toward that person, an additional three-monthprobationary period of visitsinside the enclosure begins.To continue participating in the wolf care programafter the probat ionaryperiod, the handler mustreceive a rabies pre-exposurevaccination series and atetanus booster.

    If you would like to keeptrack of the wolves’ dailycare, go to the Web site and click onthe Pack Page. ■

    Caring for the Center’s Wolf Packb y L o r i S c h m i d t , W o l f C u r a t o r

    Lucas is thealpha male ofthe ambas-sador pack.

    Captive Wolf Management Course

    Would you like to learn more aboutmanaging a captive wolf exhibit?If so, join the International Wolf Center for a one-week session:

    ■ Assist the wolf curator in daily maintenance routines

    ■ Review the protocols required tomanage a socialized wolf exhibit

    ■ Conduct behavioral observations of captive wolves

    ■ Assist with this year’s “Visiting Species” program,comparing wolves and dogs

    Sessions throughout July and August.Fee of $450 per person.

    For more information or for a program application, contact:

    Lori SchmidtInternational Wolf Center1396 Hwy. 169 Ely, MN 55731218-365-4695, ext. [email protected] site:

    D. M

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    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 18

  • Here the industrial urban-ization of southern Ontariogives way to a natural landscape of waterways andforests. And here livewolves that have been thesubject of long and intenseresearch.

    Cal led the EasternCanadian wolf, or Canislupus lycaon by some scien-tists, the Algonquin Parkwolf has been the focus ofrecent genetic study andintense debate. Some workindicates that this wolf may be more closely related to the species Canis rufus,the red wolf, whose onlyrange in the wild is now in northeastern NorthCarolina. Of grave concernin both populations is thepotential for hybridizationwith coyotes.

    Although the Algonquinwolves are protected withinthe boundaries of the park,wolves that stray outside theperimeter are regularly shot,snared or trapped. Each year, 35 to 40 park wolvesdie in this manner. There isno Endangered Species Actin Canada, and Ontarioremains, in the opinion ofmany, the worst jurisdictionin North America for wolfprotection. Outside the park,wolves may be hunted at

    I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 19

    Will we do nothing, justlet it happen, lose theAlgonquin wolf, justwhen we have discoveredits uniqueness?

    — J ohn Theberge and Mary Theberge,

    Wolf Country

    On an August evening,1,600 people gather at a campground amphithe-ater in Ontario’s AlgonquinProvincial Park. After aninformation session, a longmotorcade winds throughthe darkness to a designatedspot, where the visitors parkand climb carefully out of

    their vehicles. No doors areslammed; everyone speakssoftly. They have come to hear a sound that for centuries has inspiredawe and fear, reverence and hatred—the howling of wolves.

    Park interpreters haveconducted these publichowls since 1963, attractinghundreds of visitors each

    year to the 7,725-square-kilometer

    (about 3,000-square-mile)

    park locatedfour hoursnorth of



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    W O L V E S O F C A N A D A

    The Wolves of Algonquin Provincial Park b y N e i l H u t t

    The wolves of AlgonquinProvincial Parkare EasternCanadian wolves,or Canis lupuslycaon.

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 19

  • any time of the year by landholders or holders of asmall-game license. No baglimits or quotas are imposed,and there are no require-ments for reporting the“taking” of wolves. An estimated 150 to 170 wolveslive in the park, but researchindicates the population isnot self-sustaining; that is,mortality rates are higherthan birth rates.

    In response to reportsthat the Algonquin wolfpopulation has declined by half since the mid-1960s,M i n i s t e r o f N a t u r a lResources John Snobelen

    20 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    recently established a year-round moratorium on thekilling of wolves in 39townships immediatelysurrounding Algonquin Park.Field researchers estimatethat half of the 34 to 38 wolfpacks within the park haveranges extending beyondpark boundaries. Thus,Snobelen’s decision wasgreeted with enthusiasm bywolf supporters. However,because the moratorium is


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    Journey by Horseback Through Wolf Habitat Deep in theHeart of the Idaho Wilderness

    •One night hotel stay, with meals

    •Base camp in the wilderness with canvas cooktent and individual pop-up tents to sleep in for privacy.

    •Fully prepared home cooked meals

    •Trips begin in mid-July and end in late August

    Mile High Outfitters of Idaho, Inc.P.O. Box 1189, Challis, Idaho 83226(208) [email protected] our webpage at

    The year-round moratoriumon wolf killing exceeded the

    seasonal closures on huntingand snaring recommendedby the Minister of NaturalResources Wolf Advisory

    Committee, which scientistsand environmentalists

    view as a conservationsuccess. For the full text of

    the committee’s recommen-dations, see the Ontario

    Ministry of Natural ResourcesWeb site at

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 20

  • I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 21

    She has a rap sheet and areputation as a livestockkiller. Her mate is dead, andas the winter of 2002 turnsslowly to spring in theNorthern Rockies, Wolf Y-206, the breeding femaleof Montana’s Gravelly pack,is alone. The breeding malewas shot legally by federalwildlife officials in spring2001 after the pack killed35 sheep near Ennis,Montana. Y-206, along withher six pups and a yearling

    male, was captured in June2001 and held at TedTurner’s Flying D Ranchsouth of Bozeman, Montana.

    Six months later, inDecember 2001, the wolves—all radio-collared— weretranslocated to the remoteYaak Valley in extremenorthwestern Montana,where, it was hoped, theywould not resurrect their

    W O L V E S O F T H E U N I T E D S T A T E S

    Testing ToleranceWolf Y-206 and the Legacy of Yellowstone

    b y N e i l H u t t

    troubled past. As of lateFebruary 2002, five of thepups are still in the areawhere they were released.The sixth pup is 25 milesnorth, in Canada, and theyearling male, now nearly 2 years old, has disappearedinto Idaho.

    Y-206 didn’t stick aroundlong, either. She headedwest, presumably on a questfor a new mate. Her journeyhas taken her across thestate line and 80 miles intoan isolated region inWashington with few sheepand cattle and no other wolfpacks. The distance she hastraveled is not remarkable;during much of the year,wolves are constantly on themove. Y-206’s presence inWashington, however, isnewsworthy; the lastconfirmed wolf sighting in the state was in 1991 (see International Wolf,Winter 1992).

    set to expire in 30 months,pressure is mounting amongenvironmental groups tomake the minister’s decisionpermanent.

    Dr. John Theberge andhis wife, Mary, authors ofthe book Wolf Country, have spent years researchingthe Algonquin wolf—itsprey base (deer, beaver andmoose), the high mortalityrate and the environmentalfactors influencing its long-term survival. TheTheberges pointed out thatfor the Algonquin wolves tobe protected, they needan adequate core. In JohnTheberge’s opinion, 30months are not sufficient.“It is not long enough for a significant populationrecovery; ultimately apermanent ban must beimplemented,” Thebergesaid. “As well, if wolves areever again subject to exces-sive killing, humans, notnature, will shape behaviorand other characteristics ofthe future wolf population,and that constitutes a failurein park management.”

    The author thanks Dr. John Thebergefor his help in preparing this article.

    For more information, see:

    Wolf Country: Eleven YearsTracking the AlgonquinWolves by John Thebergewith Mary Theberge,McClelland and Stewart,Toronto, 1998.

    Algonquin Wolf AdvisoryGroup RecommendationsFact Sheet, Ontario Ministryof Natural Resources, W



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    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:40 PM Page 21

  • 22 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    The presence of Y-206also provokes thought and discussion as wolvesincrease and expand theirrange in the NorthernRockies . Wolves havealways held symbolic roles.Humans have demonizedthem as “beasts of waste anddesolation,” symbols of evil.Conversely, wolves havebeen revered as paragons of strength, endurance andskill. “I am a hunter’shunter,” the red wolf says inCherokee mythology.

    Wolves are also symbolsof untamed places, ofwilderness. Y-206’s parentswere brought from Canadato Yellowstone in the mid-1990s. They were symbolicof a new attitude towardsummit predators in generaland wolves in particular. Toan increasingly enlightenedpublic, wolves were nolonger viewed as vermin tobe ruthlessly exterminatedbut as engineers of bio-diversity, necessary to theecological health of theregions they occupy.

    Y-206’s parents were partof the Northern Rockieswolf recovery effort, one ofthe 20th century’s greatest

    conservation achievements.But Y-206, a daughter of thereintroduction success, is an example of the need toimprove public under-standing of the problemswolves can cause for peoplewho live near them and of the need to developstrategies for managing wolfpopulations.

    While many wolf advo-cates applaud the decisionto allow Y-206 to wanderfreely in Washington, othersare less enthusiastic. Wolfhaters have long distortedthe truth about wolves, butwolf advocates have alsocreated myths that do notreflect the real wolf. Y-206represents the need todistinguish between wolfpersecution and responsiblewolf management.

    Meanwhile, as of lateFebruary 2002, Y-206 is still in Washington, where hermovements are closelymonitored by U.S. Fish andWildlife biologists. If sheremains in the state, she will enjoy full protectionunder the EndangeredSpecies Act. Wildlife offi-cials predict, however, thather travels will also take herto Montana or Idaho. Inpreparation for the wolf’sr e m o v a l f r o m t h eEndangered Species list,both states are attempting to construct managementplans consistent with main-taining viable populationsof wolves and their preywhile at the same timeaddressing the challengesfaced by people directlyaffected by wolves.

    In late February 2002, Wolf Y-206 left Washington

    State and crossed into British Columbia. Biologists

    located her near a highway about 20 miles north of

    the U.S. border. The juvenile male who had moved

    into Idaho shortly after his release in Montana’s

    Yaak Valley has also moved into Canada.

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:41 PM Page 22

  • area will probably beexpanded to include mostof the western states, withno change in the recoverygoa l s . The southwes trecovery area for Mexicanwolves may be expanded.

    Some aspects of the planwill remain the same as inthe proposal. In the GreatLakes states, wolves areexpected to be reclassifiedto threatened in Wisconsinand Michigan, where theyare currently listed asendangered. The service hasindicated that it will initiatedelisting of the Great Lakeswolf population soon afterthe reclassification rule isfinalized.

    Wolf advocates areobjecting to aspects of thefinal rule even before it is released. There had been

    tremendous support for anortheastern DPS amongboth the scientific commu-nity and the general public,calls by conservationists for additional wolf recoveryareas, particularly in theSouthern Rockies and PacificNorthwest, and expectationsthat an expanded recoveryarea in the NorthernRockies would lead toincreased recovery goals.None of these is expected tobe in the final rule.Likewise, wolf opponentswill find some aspects of the rule unappea l ing .Livestock interests want tosee federal protections forwolves completely removed,rather t h a n l e s s e n e d ,i n Minnesota, Michiganand Wisconsin, as well

    If the past 30 years of wolfconservation efforts in theUnited States have taught us one thing, it is thatnothing is simple when itcomes to this species. Thecurrent tortuous process isthe federal reclassificationof wolves under theEndangered Species Act.Despite the release of aproposed reclassificationplan more than a year and ahalf ago, the final rule hasyet to be released. Thevolume and complexity ofthe document, its politicalramifications, the change in administrationsand several vacant positions at theDepartment of theInterior, includingFish and Wildlifedirector, have allcontributed to thedelay.

    The wolf reclassi-fication rule ispresently underr e v i e w i n t h eDepartment of theInterior, and the U.S.Fish and WildlifeService estimates therule will be releasedlate this spring, most likely to mixedreviews. The finalrule will addressgray wolf recoverythroughout the

    lower 48 states. It isexpected to be significantlychanged from the proposedrule, released in July 2000(see “Understanding theReclassification Controversy,”International Wolf, Summer2001). For example, therewill likely be no distinctpopulation segment (DPS)status for the northeasternstates, as was proposed inthe earl ier document,reducing the number ofDPSs in the United Statesfrom four to three. In theWest, the boundaries for theNorthern Rockies recovery

    W O L V E S O F T H E U N I T E D S T A T E S

    Wolf Reclassification in theUnited States: An Update b y N i n a F a s c i o n e

    I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 23




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    continued on next page

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:41 PM Page 23

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    Remember your last visit to the dentist? Wereyou sitting in a big moving chair, light brightly shining, the dentist peeking intoyour mouth to examine your teeth? A dentistchecks to make sure your teeth are healthy. Eachtooth has to be inspected since each one plays animportant job in how you eat your food.

    Your teeth are your body’s eating tools. Now I know what you are thinking, “Aren’t my fork,knife, and spoon my eating tools?” These toolshelp out before the food gets into your mouth.Your teeth take over after that. Animals, on the otherhand, have to do all the work with their teeth.

    Teeth can do amazing things, like tear, hold,grind and rip. These actions help get food into ananimal’s body so it can be passed on to the stomachfor digestion. The type of preparation a piece offood must go through to be ready for the stomachdepends on what food the animal is eating.

    An animal eating grass or branches has to bite,hold and pull. The front teeth performing the bite are called incisors. Molars perform grindingand chewing; they are teeth with big flat surfaces.A plant-eating animal is called an herbivore.

    If an animal has to catch another animal forfood, it might need to hold the prey with long,pointed teeth and cut it with sharp-edged teeth.These pointed canine teeth are tools for holding or tearing meat. A meat-eating animal is called a carnivore.

    Sometimes animals have pointy teeth fortearing, and flat teeth for grinding. These animalsare omnivores and eat both plants and animals.

    Teeth are important keys to learning about ananimal. By examining the teeth of an animal you can determine what kind of “eater” it is.

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    Thorne Bay, Alaska 99919


    Wolf Watch Aboard the


    as Idaho, Montana andWyoming.

    One point on whicheveryone can agree is that wolf conservation andmanagement are complexissues involving myriadperspectives. Questions suchas what constitutes wolfrecovery and how do webest manage wolves in anever more-crowded worldare just some of the keyissues that challenge wildlifemanagers, scientists, wolfadvocates and the generalpublic. This subject willcontinue to dominate theheadlines in the upcomingyear as states work to develop

    plans for managing wolvespost-delisting, and thefederal government movesforward with reclassifica-tion. Regardless of the finalrule, it is safe to assumethese issues will not goaway. Rather than endingthe wolf debate in theUnited States, reclassifica-tion might just be the begin-ning of a new chapter. ■

    Neil Hutt is an educator andInternational Wolf Centerboard member who lives inPurcellville, Virginia.

    Nina Fascione is the directorof carnivore conservation forDefenders of Wildlife and co-author of “Places for Wolves:A Blueprint for Restorationand Long-Term Recovery inthe Lower 48 States.”

    Wolf Reclassificationin the United Statescontinued from previous page

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:41 PM Page 24

  • I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 25

    Once you know what food an animal eats, youcan guess how it finds its food. A carnivore musthunt animals or find dead animals in order to eat.As long as the right plants are available, herbivorescan graze or browse to get food. So the next timeyou walk outside, think about the kind of animalyou would need to be to survive in your habitat. ■

    Be a dental detective


    Take a look in the m

    irror at your teeth an


    compare them to th

    e diagram. Do you h


    canine teeth? Molar

    s? Incisors? Based on


    you found, what kin

    d of an “eater” is a h


    Chew your food: Think about how you eat eachof the foods on this list. Doyou bite from the front or sideor use your back teeth?

    • Carrot• Corn on the cob• Popcorn• Chicken wing• Apple• Ice cream cone

    Count them out: Count how many teeth you have. ____________

    Guess how many teeth a wolf has.____________

    What difference does it make how many teeth an animal has?



    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:41 PM Page 25

  • 26 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    breeds and the ways in which theirbehaviors and bodies are shaped.

    Within the scientific community,the Coppingers’ book will perhapsspark debate and renew interest inthe examination of long-standingtheories. The broader readershipstands to benefit as well, becausedespite some inconsistencies andcontradictions within the text, theideas and ideals presented are clearlyintended to be educational.

    However, the chapters on house-hold and assistance dogs are certain to provoke a far stronger reactionfrom all readers. Here, the Coppingersadopt a caustic, censorious tone, andtheir comments seem less criticallyconstructive than derisive. The views and attitudes tend toward theextreme and inflammatory, which is unfortunate since this apparent loss ofobjectivity will inevitably underminethe credibility that was so painstak-ingly cultivated in previous chapters.The message is jeopardized.

    Raising awareness of the perils ofimproper breeding and training isabsolutely legitimate, but combativelanguage only incites anger and willnot lead people to work togethertoward a solution. And it is clear thatthe Coppingers, having spent theirlives in the company and study ofdogs, are in pursuit of solutions.Their eloquent, joyous portrayal ofthe science and theory of sled dogsport alone is convincing evidence oftheir ongoing enjoyment of anddevotion to the world of dogkind. ■

    Dog-lover Jakki Harbolick is a languagearts and writing teacher. She lives inLeesburg, Virginia, with her husband,Pete, and their two children.

    b y J a k k i H a r b o l i c k

    Dogs: A Startling New Understanding of Canine Origin,Behavior and Evolution by Raymond Coppingerand Lorna CoppingerScribner, 2001

    In Dogs: A Startling New Under-standing of Canine Origin,Behavior and Evolution, Raymondand Lorna Coppinger offer, by turns,charming personalnarrative, objectivetheoretical treatise,and harsh ethnocen-tric criticism. Seriousreaders should preparethemselves to be enter-tained and educated,but also affronted bythis peculiar mixtureof scientific detach-ment and personalprejudice. Initially thereader’s attention iscaptured by the book’spreface and by theunusual dedication,which is a funny, enigmatic miniaturework of art. Readers who push on will find the tone rapidly shifting,however, as the authors settle downto the serious work of expoundingtheir theories regarding the origin and evolution of dogs.

    The Coppingers’ basic premise isthat dogs and wolves evolved separately from a common ancestor,and that humans did not create dogsby taming wolves, but rather dogscreated themselves. The theory is that

    among dogs’ now-extinct ancestorswere some that were geneticallypredisposed to living near humanhabitations. Being less fearful, these“pre-dogs” were able to capitalize ontheir access to the three biologicalnecessities for species success: food,safety and reproductive opportunity.The genetic predisposition towardtameness also, as a side effect, resultedin the physical changes that makedogs look like dogs, not wolves. From this relatively tame populationof “village dogs,” humans began toadopt and domesticate individuals.Natural breeds evolved based on envi-

    ronment and humanfavor shown to indi-viduals for good job performance,and additional artifi-cial refinement ofthese natural breedshas led to the development of themodern dog.

    The roles playedby genetics, naturalselection, environ-ment and humaninfluence cum inter-ference are eachexamined in the

    light of anecdotal and scientificevidence. Particularly intriguing, as apossible parallel for the authors’ theo-ries on canine evolution from wildwolf to village dog, is the account ofwhat happened when a Russian foxfur farm began to breed its foxes forthe characteristic of tameness. Thechapters on developmental environ-ment and on physical and behavioralconformation are equally fascinating,providing an in-depth, if optimisti-cally biased, look at various working

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:41 PM Page 26

  • T WO NEW WOLF THESEShave been produced. SamMerrill completed his Ph.D. disserta-tion, “An Evaluation of the Use ofGlobal Positioning System Telemetryin Studying Wolf Biology,” and Dan MacNulty his master’s thesis,“The Predatory Sequence and Patternsof Risk-Sensitive Foraging in theWolf.” Both students were advised by Dr. David Mech at the University of Minnesota.

    AWOLF IN AUSTRIA was killedby a hunter who thought theanimal was a dog that had killed a reddeer, according to the World WildlifeFund Austria. This is the first wolf record in Austria since 1996. AsEuropean wolf populations continueto increase and proliferate, dispersersmay be immigrating to Austria fromthe Czech Republic, Slovenia or Italy.

    WOLF MANAGEMENT INIDAHO passed a milestone asthe 17th draft of a wolf managementplan was endorsed by livestock andranchers’ groups along with someenvironmental organizations duringstate legislative hearings. The plan,which advocates maintaining 15breeding wolf pairs (about 120wolves) in Idaho, has won approvalfrom the senate and the house andnow goes to the governor for approval.

    WOLF PACK KILLS LION DOG” was a suitable title foran incident in which the ThunderMountain pack of nine wolvesdispatched one of two mountainlion–hunting dogs that were left out overnight in the NorthernRockies on February 1. Wolves havekilled several bear-hunting dogs inWisconsin and several livestock-guarding dogs in other areas.

    TWO WOLF CONFERENCESwere held in April. The MidwestWolf Stewards Meeting took place inTwo Harbors, Minnesota, on April 3-4,2002. The Western Wolf Conferencemet April 23-24, 2002, in Boise, Idaho.

    WO L F A T T A C K S O NHUMANS is the subject of aJanuary report by the Norsk Institute,Norway. The report includessummaries of the relatively fewconfirmed attacks by non-rabidwolves on humans around the worldand concludes that there have beenmore attacks in Europe and Asia thanin North America. There are no documented cases of non-rabid, wildwolves killing a person in NorthAmerica, and most incidents of wolf attacks there involved wolveshabituated to humans.

    AWOLF COURSE in February at the Yellowstone AssociationInstitute in the heart of Yellowstone’swolf range got off to a good start. The course on “Wolf Interactionswith Their Prey” was scheduled byinstructor Dave Mech to begin at8:30 a.m. As the class assembled inthe parking lot of the Institute’s head-quarters, a pack of 13 wolves acrossthe road began attacking a herd of120 elk. Promptly at 8:30 a.m, thepack killed two elk while the wholeclass watched and Mech narrated!

    AWOLF FROM FINLAND immigrated into northernSweden and was radio-collared onFebruary 1, according to AndersBjarvall, the IUCN Wolf SpecialistGroup representative from Sweden.This is the first wolf ever radio-trackedin that part of Sweden. Genetics testson the wolf’s blood documented theanimal’s Finnish origin. ■

    I n t e r n a t i o n a l W o l f S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 27




    na R



    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:41 PM Page 27

  • As a land use planner, I am familiar with terms like landmanagement and zoning.These are regulatory tools that havebeen constitutionally upheld in thiscountry for more than a century. Iwas initially bemused upon seeing anarticle on “wolf management zoning”in International Wolf magazine. ThenI recalled that this regulatory conceptwas initiated by Congress over aquarter-century ago.

    We all get into our personal andprofessional comfort zones (pardonthe pun) and often forget about theneed for tolerance, balance and goodjudgment in the way we conductourselves. In fact, we humans dosuch a poor job of that that we haveto create rules to plan for better citiesand neighborhoods, to zone forcompatibility and transition betweenland uses, and to manage and protectnatural resources.

    Wolf Management Zoning versus Human Management Zoningb y D e a n J o h n s o n

    So what is so odd or novel aboutwolf zoning? Absolutely nothing. In fact, the concept is logical and should be far less complicatedthan “human zoning.” We find it necessary and tolerable to protecthome owners with a barrage ofzoning techniques, such as enforcingminimum building separation andprohibiting incompatible land uses. We also protect farmers from“frivolous” claims against typicalfarm “nuisances,” such as animalodors, late-night cultivating, andslow-moving vehicles, by enacting“right to farm” ordinances.

    Wolf management zoning isunderlain by Congress’s guarantee ofwolves’ “right to live.” The concept is simple. A “primary” wolf zone ofnatural habitat is established wherehuman intervention is minimal. A“secondary” wolf zone is establishedon the fringe where wolves stray andhuman activity is more prevalent.Wolves’ rights are more protected inthe primary zone, while tolerance for straying wolves is balanced withhumans’ rights in the secondary zone.

    In land use planning, we alsostruggle with strays. Today we hear a lot about “smart growth,” a newand overused term that implies amagic potion may exist for an oldproblem — sprawl. Smart growthattempts to make urban areas moreefficient and attractive, and a majorlure for smart growth proponents is the prospect of containing sprawl.Sprawl, of course, is caused bystraying humans.

    Humans need to remember thatbalance is the key to survival for all things. We need to ask ourselves,“Who’s the intruder here?” Afterinvoking human management zoningto protect humans from each other, it is time we accepted wolf manage-ment zoning as a means to protectwolves from humans. ■

    Dean Johnson has 25 years of experience in city planning inMinnesota. He is currently president of Resource Strategies Corporation, aland use planning and environmentalplanning consulting firm inMinnetonka, Minnesota.




    28 S u m m e r 2 0 0 2 w w w . w o l f . o r g

    IntWolf 4/22/02 6:41 PM Page 28

  • Donated collection now available to the public.

    Extra savings, low prices!

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    Proceeds directly benefit theInternational Wolf Center mission.

    Save money on collectible wildlife art and support the survival of wolves worldwide!

    The International Wolf Center is a non-profitorganization dedicated to supporting the

    survival of wolves worldwide through education.

    View our online gallery byvisiting For private inquiries,please call 763-560-7374Any donation above the already low asking price is tax deductible to the full extent of the law.

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    Our programs and resources provide opportunities

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    Call 1-800-ELY-WOLF, ext. 25 or for more information.

    Educators:Bring Wolves Right Into Your Classroom

    Speakers Bureau: presentations tailored to age and interest

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    Cover 4/22/02 6:05 PM Page 2

  • 3300 Bass Lake Road, #202Minneapolis, MN 55429-2518


    U.S. Postage

    PAIDPermit #4894

    Mpls., MN

    Red Wolf Pups TestTrapping Skills, page 4

    Wolf Research Tools, page 9

    Wolves Heading toCalifornia? page 12


    Do Something Really This Summer. Visit Us!The International Wolf Center in Ely, Minnesota. Plan your trip to wild wolf country now.

    Wilmeet our Ambassador Pack of wolves including two rare arctic

    wolves enjoy viewing the new wolf enclosure pond and rock landscaping trek through wolf habitat: track, hike, howl or journey to an abandoned wolf den learn about the similarities and differences between wolves and dogs through daily programs in Julyand August romp with the kids in our Little Wolf children's exhibit

    learn all about wolves and wildlands through a special speaker series


    May 10 - June 30 . . . 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.

    July 1- Aug 31 . . . . . 9 a.m. - 7 p.m.

    Sept 1- Oct 20. . . . . . 9 a.m. - 5 p.m.


    See for information and program schedules. Phone:1-800-ELY-WOLF, ext. 25

    Cover 4/23/02 4:54 PM Page 1