Wolves, wolves, wolves. Seems like no matter what hunting site you visit there is a story about wolves. Whether they are killing livestock, being reintroduced, or chasing an elk on a trail cam, you can’t help but read about them. Well, this article is no different. Wolves are in the news again, and as a news site, we are gonna write about them. We all have our own opinions on the big ol’ pups. Some want them all dead, others want to save every last one. There is a happy medium in there somewhere and Wyoming Game and Fish is trying to find that sweet spot.
Officials in Wyoming are looking to drop the tags by 40 percent in the state’s trophy game area. The reduction from 58 tags down to 33 is to help bolster a drop in population. WYGFD agreed to maintain 100 of the canines with at least 10 breeding pairs when they took over management of the wolves from USFWS. Current population numbers are at 152 which is 8 less than the 160 goal in the trophy area. The 160 number gives large carnivore biologist Ken Mills confidence they will stay above the threshold. Mills is the WYGFD Wolf program Director. The drop in population comes from hunting, a bad year for pup recruitment, diseases, and lethal contact in non-hunting events.
Other areas in Wyoming would have wolf tag numbers changed as well. Area 10 would change from 5 wolves to 2. While area 12 would go from 2 tags to an open season for most of the year. Zone 13 could have its season extended deep into winter to allow hunters more time to hunt.
No one has a solid solution but WYGFD is showing how proper game management at the state level can maintain wolf populations. This is a step in the right direction for the wolf to finally be delisted and states given the right to manage their own predators. What are your thoughts on the changes?