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Third kill chalked up to Rogue wolf pack - Wolves confirmed in northern Cascades

Medford Mail Tribune 1/17/18


BUTTE FALLS — Officials with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife confirmed the Rogue Pack of gray wolves was responsible for two more killings of cow calves on a Butte Falls ranch last week, bringing the total loss for rancher Ted Birdseye to three calves within a week.

ODFW officials had already believed the second calf had been killed by the Rogue Pack, but waited another day to investigate further before confirming Friday, Jan. 12, that the pack had been responsible. In the interim, however, another calf was killed, within 500 yards of the first two casualties, according to a press release from ODFW.

GPS frequencies from the pack’s only collared member, a 2-year-old female called OR-54, helped authorities determine the pack was responsibility. Data collected at 2 a.m. Jan. 10 placed her 10 yards from the second carcass, and a reading at the same time Jan. 11 placed her 50 yards from the third carcass.

OR-54, who likely is a female from OR-7′s 2016 litter, was captured and collared Oct. 3, in Klamath County’s Wood River Valley, the eastern portion of the Rogue Pack’s home range, according to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

Physical evidence also is used to determine whether a pack made a kill. The most recent calf killed had several identifiable bite marks. The release said authorities found several wolf tracks and hair tufts along a chase scene that stretched 10 yards.

The second attack, which took two days to confirm, had less clear evidence of an attack, such as tracks or visible bite marks before death.

After the late-night attack Jan. 9, U.S. Fish and Wildlife biologist John Stephenson said the agency would continue to try using nonlethal deterrents to prevent any more kills. No official could be reached Monday to confirm whether that was still the case.

Wolves confirmed in northern Cascades

THE DALLES — At least two wolves are using an area in southern Wasco County, marking the first time multiple wolves have been confirmed in the northern portion of Oregon’s Cascade Mountains since they began returning to Oregon in the 2000s, according to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The wolves were documented on the White River Wildlife Area and Mount Hood National Forest and have also been observed on the Warm Springs Indian Reservation.

Several wolves are known to have dispersed through Wasco County in the past few years. A single wolf was documented in the White River Unit in December 2013. In May 2015, a wolf from the Imnaha pack travelled through the area as he dispersed to Klamath County. Later in 2015, a single wolf was documented in Wasco County.

Additional information about Oregon’s wolf population will be available in March, after ODFW completes its annual winter surveys and minimum population count.



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