News Release

Two Wolves are on the Move at Isle Royale National Park

An image shows an arrow shaped tracking line

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News Release Date: October 1, 2018

Contact: Phyllis Green, 906-487-7140

Contact: Liz Valencia, 906-369-7146

Contact: Alexandra Picavet, 402-960-0688

HOUGHTON, MICH – The two wolves brought to Isle Royale National Park on September 26 have been seen on wildlife cameras and tracked via a GPS monitoring collar, moving around the island and feeding on provisioned moose left for them. The joint capture effort between the Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa and USDA Wildlife Services (APHIS) has expanded the dataset and knowledge of wolf pack activity in Minnesota and caught more wolves in the first week than expected. Their efforts have been a critical part of the success of the wolf relocation to date. 

Over the weekend, game cameras monitoring a moose carcass caught the first images of the two wolves recently translocated to the island. As part of the translocation efforts, moose carcasses were placed in specific areas on the landscape to provide initial nutrition and attract wolves to these locations while subsequent wolf translocations occur in different areas.

At different times both wolves, outfitted with GPS collars, visited carcass sites. The image above shows GPS locations for the 4 year old female (ISRO-2018-001). She found the first carcass within 2 hours of leaving her crate (green square in the map).  She remained in the vicinity of the carcass through the following morning and then moved northeastward and visited another location where the NPS stationed a moose carcass.  As of this press release, her last GPS position indicated she has moved at least 12 miles into the interior of the island.  The NPS will use GPS collar data to determine how translocated wolves form social groups and visit kill sites to understand more about predation impacts, to keep track of individual life histories, and to confirm reproduction. The collar signals from the male have not uploaded any data which is normal for satellite monitoring startups, but he has been seen in game cameras and is moving around the island. The capture and translocation operations will continue in Minnesota and Michigan for the next several weeks.

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Press Briefing Information: On October 2, the NPS will hold a call-in press availability to discuss the wolf translocation project and provide details on the photos, videos and updates on the process.  The NPS has been posting photos and videos from this operation regularly. The press availability call will focus on trapping and capture efforts to date. The majority of wolves captured have been released back into the wild on the mainland due to the selection criteria for this project, which has specific age and sex ratios and health requirements for successful translocation.

WHO:

  • Phyllis Green, Superintendent, Isle Royale National Park
  • Seth Moore, Director, Environment and Biology, Grand Portage Band of Chippewa
  • Tanya Espinosa, Public Affairs Specialist, USDA - APHIS
  • John Hart, MN District Supervisor, USDA Wildlife Services

WHAT:

  • Press Briefing - Media

WHEN:

  • October 2, 2018, 9:00 a.m. EDT/8:00 CT

WHERE:

  • Teleconference

RSVP:

  • RSVP in advance by email to alexandra_picavet@nps.gov   
 

Photos, video clips, interviews, updates and press releases are posted for the media on the Isle Royale National Park website, https://www.nps.gov/isro/learn/news/presskit.htm. Updates will be shared regularly on Facebook, and Instagram, @isleroyalenps.

 

www.nps.gov

 

About the National Park Service. More than 20,000 National Park Service employees care for the 417 parks in the National Park System and work with communities across the nation to help preserve local history and create close-to-home recreational opportunities. Visit us at www.nps.gov, on Facebook www.facebook.com/nationalparkservice, Twitter www.twitter.com/natlparkservice, and YouTube www.youtube.com/nationalparkservice



Last updated: June 23, 2020

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