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Old 06-11-2012, 02:18 PM
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Default Encounters with wolves? or "Dances with Wolf"

Early this year a gray wolf wandered into the state of California from a pack in Oregon that migrated there from the reintroductions in Idaho and/or Yellowstone. Article here: Lone gray wolf crosses into California (Yahoo! News)

He is a lone wolf making him the first of his kind to move in since 1924. He was recently spotted opening up a wolf post office and a sign (translated from the original liquid territory marker - wolf language - by none other than Lucan the Wolf Boy) - reading thusly:
Welcome to California
THE GOLDEN STATE
pop. 1


Quote from the aforementioned article:"The fish and game department expects other wolves to arrive in California at some point as part of a slow wolf migration linked to the 1995 introduction of a Canadian gray wolf pack to Idaho and areas around Yellowstone National Park. Wolves first re-entered Oregon in 1999."

You often hear tell of fly fishing encounters with bears. Rattlesnakes. Mountain Lions. Ticks. Muskrats. Thieving people. Hell, there are even Marmots attacking our cars.

These guys will likely establish a CA population smack dab amongst the best water in the state. Probably in my lifetime (hopefully). I like the idea, but I ain't no rancher. This particular canis lupus already has some tough critics (some of them semi-literate politicians) in the State of Jefferson. Those of us that are fond of the idea of sharing the habitat could really use a primer, or a refresher for those of us over 95 years old.

I have questions for those of you who fly fish while dancing with wolves (well, wolf if you are in NorCal), those of you that fish areas with wolf populations.

First, I would love if you posted any experiences or photos.

Also:
  • Can they be dangerous to people?
  • Have there been any, fatal or not, wolf attacks on people in the last 40 years?
  • Are the safety/food protocols similar to those for bears or are there additional/different aspects?

Thanks in advance and DOWN WITH SILVER BULLETS!


Click the image to open in full size.Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 06-11-2012, 02:45 PM
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Default Re: Encounters with wolves? or "Dances with Wolf"

Well Noiso, I live at the geographical epicenter of the modern wolf - society conflict.

The warnings I will make are toward the conflict that will arise with your neighbors, not the animals themselves.

There are more wolves in Idaho, but a lot less people. Western Montana is more heavily populated if you will, and the wolf numbers have increased and their territory has expanded for years. There are two very vocal factions; those that believe one wolf is too many, and those that somehow think we should just let predators expand uncontrolled. I stand in the middle.

At any rate, I have seen wolf sign ONCE in my dozen years fishing in Montana. It was a track on a trail in a roadless area on the edge of the wilderness between MT and ID. It was pretty spectacular, think big German Shepard paw print but 4 or 5" across!

Wolves do not interact with people. I have never heard or read a report of a wolf or pack of wolves challenging a person. The do like to kill pet dogs, deer, elk calves, cow calves, sheep, ect.
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Old 06-11-2012, 02:53 PM
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Default Re: Encounters with wolves? or "Dances with Wolf"

Quote:
Originally Posted by dean_mt View Post
There are more wolves in Idaho, but a lot less people. Western Montana is more heavily populated if you will, and the wolf numbers have increased and their territory has expanded for years.
Thanks Dean. (Note to self: Change plans to move to Montana. Instead, make plans to move to Idaho.)
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Old 06-11-2012, 03:16 PM
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Default Re: Encounters with wolves? or "Dances with Wolf"

I've never seen a wolf in the wild but there's a guy not far from home who's got some(see pics)...seen a report on tv of another guy who lives with wolves and it was very interesting .While fishing in Austria I once saw a fox coming just in front of me...he was held in leash by a ladyand once I was lucky to see a lynx...but no wolf so far
here are pics :
Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 06-11-2012, 09:08 PM
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Default Re: Encounters with wolves? or "Dances with Wolf"

Cool photos, Thanks.
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Old 06-11-2012, 10:36 PM
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Default Re: Encounters with wolves? or "Dances with Wolf"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Noiso View Post
Thanks Dean. (Note to self: Change plans to move to Montana. Instead, make plans to move to Idaho.)
For the wolves or the solitude? Or both? Either way, you'll win!

By the way, I didn't mention that the news of the wolf making it into California is pretty cool. They are amazing animals and can obviously move a long way.

That photo of the pack laying in the shade is great! It took a second to even find them.
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Old 06-12-2012, 05:47 PM
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Default Re: Encounters with wolves? or "Dances with Wolf"

We have wolves in Northern Wisconsin, they have multiplied so successfully that there is talk about opening a season to hunt them. I have never seen one in all my travels up there fishing or Bird hunting, have seen lots of tracks. I don't worry about them, like all wild animals they like to keep their distance from humans.
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Old 06-18-2012, 11:42 PM
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Default Re: Encounters with wolves? or "Dances with Wolf"

I live part time in Montana and do a lot of hiking and fishing in wolf country. Never even enters my mind to be worried about a conflict with a wolf. Only one I ever saw while fishing was while floating a river in Alaska, but I've watched them many times in Yellowstone.

Now...grizzlies are another matter. I'm always looking over my shoulder in grizzly country.
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Old 06-19-2012, 08:34 AM
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Default Re: Encounters with wolves? or "Dances with Wolf"

It seems the only time anyone ever sees anything of our Oregon wolves is when they are caught on a trail cam or the remains of a kill site.

I think that encounters with fishermen are going to be a very, very rare occurrence.
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Old 06-19-2012, 11:43 AM
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Default Re: Encounters with wolves? or "Dances with Wolf"

I have a buddy that saw a wolf track on the Little Truckee this spring. It was a rather good sized print, no sightings of the animal yet though.
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