Isle Royale official: Wolves could soon form pack | Michigan Radio
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Isle Royale official: Wolves could soon form pack

Dec 25, 2019

Credit Eva Blue / Unsplash

Wolves on Isle Royale have begun to hunt and travel as a group. 

It’s part of a process park officials say could eventually lead to the formation of the island’s first new pack.

Three of the island’s 15 wolves have begun to travel together, the group is made up of two males and one female. 

“It will take a little time to see if we would consider them a pack because they have to be traveling together, defending the territory, and then also we’ll see in the spring if they reproduce," says Liz Valencia, Isle Royale National Park's temporary superintendent. "Then we’ll have an established pack.”

Valencia says if a pack forms on the island, she’ll consider it a success. The goal is to keep moose populations in check.

“When a pack forms, then they can take down more moose and that really shows that we brought these wolves out there and so far that has been a success because they have grouped together and formed packs.”

The park has also noted that two wolf deaths from the fall of this year were caused by other wolves. 

Valencia said aggression between wolves was not unexpected. 

“Researchers did expect that would happen. So many wolves are on the island, they are trying to establish territories, they are trying to sort out the social hierarchy, so that will happen on the island as wolves do that.”

One of the wolves that died was an old male that was on the island before relocation efforts began.