The wolf population, once nearly wiped out because of bounties, increased 11% last year according to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife.
The Department of Fish and Wildlife counted at least 124 wolves in Oregon, according to the agency’s 2017 Annual Wolf Report released in mid-April. The report tallies the number of wolves seen by people as well as tracks and remote photographs. The wolf population is likely higher than 124, which is a minimum, according to an article in the Bend Bulletin. Most of the wolves live in northeastern and southern Oregon, but two gray wolves were seen in the White River Wildlife Area of Wasco County in late 2017. That’s the first time gray wolves have been seen in the northern Cascades since their forced return to Oregon at the dawn of the 21st century. The report noted 17 incidents of livestock killed by wolves last year, down from 24 reports the previous year. State biologists said five wolves were put down after killing livestock; four others were killed illegally.