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Wolf Population & Distribution

Montana Wolf Distribution

  • Wolf packs occur primarily in western Montana, but wolves could be found anywhere in Montana.
  • Wolves are great travelers and are known to disperse up to 500 miles.

Montana Wolf Population

  • Wolves first began colonizing northwest Montana near Glacier National Park in the early 1980s.
  • Wolves were reintroduced into Yellowstone National Park and the central Idaho wilderness in 1995 and 1996.
  • Since then, the Montana population has increased through natural reproduction and dispersal into new areas.
  • The average wolf pack in Montana has 6 to 8 animals.

Wolves in the Northern Rockies

Wolf Distribution

  • The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service designated 3 separate wolf recovery areas in the northern Rockies: northwest Montana, Central Idaho, and the Greater Yellowstone area.
  • The State of Montana contains portions of all three federal recovery areas.
  • Biologists have documented wolf dispersal between and among all three recovery areas.

Annual Report

For more information about wolf population and distribution please view the Montana Gray Wolf Conservation & Management Annual Report the Wolf Program page.