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DNR hopes to track wolves in the northern Lower Peninsula

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service/Flickr

The state Department of Natural Resources is on the prowl for wolves in the northern Lower Peninsula, and it's asking for help.

The department launched a survey Monday that hopes to catalog all sightings of wolves or wolf tracks until March 8.

But it's unlikely that very many wolves -- if any -- will be seen. Jennifer Kleitch is a wildlife biologist, and she said no wolves were recorded last time the survey was conducted two years ago.

"The goal of the survey is to determine whether they're here, and if they are, where they're located," Kleitch said. "We don't have a good estimate at this time, and that's why we're continuing to do the survey."

Kleitch said the wolves are hard to track because they are highly mobile and often travel long distances.

People can submit sightings online or by phone. A team from the DNR will follow up on credible reports.

State wildlife officials are considering creating a wolf hunting season in the Upper Peninsula. Meanwhile, the humane society and other groups filed a federal lawsuit on Tuesday that seeks to restore federal protections for the gray wolf.

-- Joseph Lichterman, Michigan Radio Newsroom