Wolf Update 2018 Pt 1

Wolf Update 2018 Pt 1

Bob Larson
Bob Larson
I'm Bob Larson. The Washington wolf population continues to grow. After a long absence, wolves were spotted again in Washington back in 2005. Since then, Fish and Wildlife wolf specialist Ben Maletzke says the population has increased for the 9th straight year ...

MALETZKE ... "We ended up, through our annual surveys, with 122 wolves for a minimum count this year and that's up from last year from 115. So, that's about a 6 percent increase in the population and we have 22 known packs in Washington that we've been able to locate and find. And, this year we ended up with 14 successful breeding pairs."

In response to groups worried the wolf population growth is too slow, Maletzke says...

MALETZKE ... "You know, we're still seeing that increasing trend. Wolf populations are variable, you know, over time. We've seen some pretty high increased growth rates all the way down to 2 percent growth rate in 2013. So, the overall trend is still at 31 percent so we're still feeling that the population is still growing steadily and wolves are doing okay."

Maletzke says the wolves' migration, like in the North Cascades, haven't taken off like they thought they would ...

MALETZKE ... "But, we've got some promising signs. You know, it comes down to kind of dispersals and kind of packs in existence. And, the more packs we get, the faster those areas are going to fill in."

Maletzke says one lone wolf has been found in eastern Skagit County, the first confirmed wolf living west of the Cascades.

Listen tomorrow for more on the statewide spread of the wolves and if might need some help.

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