Litter size is 2 to 10 pups (average of 5), born in May.
Adult males weigh 76—130 lbs (average 105 lbs).
Adult females weigh 70—107 lbs (average 88 lbs).
Generally stand 2.5 feet tall at the shoulders.
Live up to 12 years.
Individual color varies from black to white, with gray the most common.
Territories average 200-600 square miles per pack.
Average pack size is 4.5 wolves.
Wolf Surveys and Long-term Monitoring
Since 1986, biologists have monitored wolf populations in Denali. Wolves is one of 18 vital signs monitored in the park as part of the Central Alaska Network (CAKN) Inventory & Monitoring Program. For the past 25 years, biologists have monitored on average 95 wolves annually (north of the Alaska Range). Fall wolf densities have ranged from 2.7 to 9.8 wolves per 1000 square kilometers (7.0 to 25.3 wolves per 1000 square miles). However, wolf densities for the past three years have been the lowest in Denali since 1987. No obvious explanation for this current low density is apparent.
Data Wolf Survey Data, 1986 - 2016
Surveys are conducted in spring and fall each year to estimate wolf populations in the park. The file linked above splits the latest data into spring and fall counts, which are the best methods of comparison from year to year (i.e., look at spring counts each year to determine population trends, rather than a single year's spring and fall counts).
Wolf Research in Denali
Wolf Viewing Project
Bridget Borg, a wildlife biologist at Denali and a graduate student at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, is studying what factors may be influencing the viewability of wolves in Denali. Learn more about the wolf viewing project
The wolves that inhabit Denali face many natural factors such as weather and availability of prey that may affect their behavior, where they travel and have their dens, and their population size. Human-related factors, such as human development or legal trapping outside the park boundary, may also affect wolves inhabiting Denali. The number of wolves in Denali has ranged from approximately 60 to 100. However, the story of wolves in Denali is not just about the numbers (population size), but also about the ability of people to view them.
Are wolf viewing opportunities at risk?
The park held a wolf program review in January 2013 in order to reflect on the legacy of wolf studies in Denali. The outcome of the review is a booklet of findings and recommendations to be used by Denali's new biological program manager to evaluate the wolf program and identify focus areas.