Two separate wolf depredation incidents were recently confirmed on private land in the Paradise Valley. In each case, one calf was confirmed killed by wolves.
The first incident occurred at the south end of the Paradise Valley after a lame cow and a calf were left behind when cattle were being moved off summer pasture. The second incident occurred in the north end of the valley. USDA Wildlife Services confirmed the depredations on Oct. 19 and 21.
In the south-valley incident, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks authorized Wildlife Services to conduct lethal control, but the landowner, who expected hunters to be on the property, requested that no additional action be taken. FWP will continue to monitor for wolves in the area.
In the north-valley incident, which also occurred during the process of moving cattle off summer pasture, FWP authorized Wildlife Services to remove two wolves that were in the area at the time of the depredation. FWP also issued a shoot-on-sight permit to the landowner. Two wolves were shot on October 25. One carcass was retrieved. The other wolf was mortally wounded, but not retrieved due to high winds, snow, and deteriorating weather. Efforts to find this uncollared wolf on Oct. 26 were unsuccessful. Efforts to complete the control action are ongoing.
Because wolves inhabit places in Montana where people live, work and recreate, FWP’s wolf management work includes helping landowners reduce livestock-depredation risks and wolf-related conflicts. FWP’s federally approved wolf management program aims to conserve and actively manage a recovered wolf population in a manner similar to the way Montana manages lions and black bears.
USDA Wildlife Services is a cooperating federal agency that investigates injured and dead livestock to determine the cause and carries out the field response at the direction of FWP. Both agencies work to help reduce depredation risks and address wolf-related conflicts.
The public can help FWP monitor Montana’s wolf population by reporting wolves or wolf sign on line at www.fwp.mt.gov/wildthings/wolf, mailing a pre-printed postcard available at all FWP offices, or calling the nearest FWP regional office or Carolyn Sime, statewide wolf coordinator, at 406-444-3242. Data gathered from the public helps FWP document wolf activity in new areas. It also helps FWP confirm pack size and wolf distribution.