Washington wolf packs producing pups

Wolf pups from the Methow Valley Lookout Pack were caught on a motion-activated camera in 2009. (Conservation Northwest)
Wolf pups from the Methow Valley Lookout Pack were caught on a motion-activated camera in 2009. (Conservation Northwest)

ENDANGERED SPECIES — Half of Washington’s 10 confirmed wolf packs are believed to have had pups this spring, including those in the Lookout territory of western Okanogan County for the first time in three years, according to a report by Andy Walgamott of Northwest Sportsman magazine.

Donny Martorello, WDFW’s wolf manager, told Walgamott the Teanaway pack in the Central Cascades, and Huckleberry, Smackout and Diamond packs in northeastern Washington are the other packs that appear to have litters, based on denning activity, GPS telemetry data clustering around one spot in a territory, and, in the case of the Lookout Pack, a photo of a lactating female.

That means the state's wolf population is suddenly increased by at least 20-30.

The reproductive status of the Salmo, Wenatchee and Wedge wolves and the Colville Tribes’ Nc’icn and Strawberry packs is unknown at this time, Martorello told NW Sportsman.

Five successful breeding pairs, including Teanaway, Huckleberry, Smackout, Diamond and Nc’icn, were reported in Washington in December in the 2012 state-tribal report to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

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Rich Landers

Rich Landers’ Outdoors blog

Rich Landers writes and photographs stories for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including a Sunday feature section and a Thursday column. He also writes the Outdoors Blog.

By Rich Landers richl@spokesman.com (509) 459-5508

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