The wolf population in Montana continues to stay stable. Montana’s Fish, Wildlife & Parks is estimating the 2021 population at 1,144 wolves. Which, according to the 2020 survey, is down by 40 wolves.
“What the data shows us really isn’t surprising. Our management of wolves, including ample hunting and trapping opportunities, have kept numbers at a relatively stable level during the past several years.”-FWP Director Hank Worsech
One difference in this data set from others is it is based on a calendar year. As a result, harvest quotas are not reflective of the current population trends. This is consistent with how many agencies, including Montana’s FWP, have collected data since the 1980s.
Montana State Legislature has recently given the FWP additional tools to assist with wolf management. This will help them keep numbers at a reasonable level and still above recovery thresholds.
“We are following the law. And are doing so in a way that provides certainty that wolf populations in Montana will remain off the Endangered Species List.” -Director Hank Worsech
Over the last decade, the wolf population in Montana has seen an estimated high of 1,256. On the other hand, in 2017, the state saw an estimated low of 1,113. At the end of the 2021 data report, there are 192 separate wolf packs located within the state.
The wolf in North America will continue to be a hot topic for years to come. Whether to completely de-list or to keep them endangered for eternity is not an easy discussion to have. Thanks for reading!