Grouse Flats pack update

Publish date

On October 28, 2018, a livestock producer found an injured cow on a U.S. Forest Service grazing allotment in the Grouse Flats wolf pack territory. WDFW staff investigated the injuries and confirmed they were caused by one or more wolves from the Grouse Flats pack. This is the third confirmed wolf depredation in four months by the Grouse Flats pack.  

In this incident, the cow was limping and favoring its right front shoulder and leg. There were fresh puncture marks to the shoulder accompanied by hemorrhaging and swelling. There were bite wounds to the right rear high on the quarter and inside of the leg. The lower inside of the right front leg showed signs of trauma. The injuries appeared to be less than a few days old.

The first confirmed depredation occurred on August 23, 2018 in a fenced private pasture within the Grouse Flats pack territory and resulted in severe injuries to a 200-pound heifer calf. The calf had a puncture and tooth scrape on its front shoulder. On the rear flank, there was another puncture wound and adjacent tooth scrape. On the calf’s rear extending into the groin area, there were two large tears leaving an open wound with torn hide and exposed muscle tissue. Because of the nature of the wounds and their location on the calf, WDFW staff determined the injuries were caused by a wolf.

The second confirmed depredation occurred on September 2, 2018 and involved a 600-pound calf that was chased out of a U.S. Forest Service allotment onto an adjacent private pasture where it was killed and partially consumed. The calf had severe tissue loss and damage including hemorrhaging on the lower side of both hindquarters continuing into the groin area. The hide from the lower hindquarters showed hemorrhaging and puncture wounds. There was also hemorrhaging behind the front left shoulder. The lower 6-8 inches of the hide on the tail were split and removed from the tail bone, accompanied by hemorrhaging and tooth scrapes at the base of the tail. WDFW staff investigated the depredation site and conducted a full necropsy on the carcass. The damage to the calf was consistent with a wolf depredation. Staff located multiple fresh wolf tracks near the carcass as well. WDFW staff determined the kill was caused by a wolf or wolves with evidence present.

The details of the three depredation incidents are as follows: 

Date

Producer

Livestock age

WDFW Classification

Livestock deposition

Aug 23

Producer 1

Heifer calf

Confirmed

Injury

Sept 2

Producer 2

Steer calf

Confirmed

Kill

Oct 28

Producer 3

Cow

Confirmed

Injury

 

Producer 1 grazes cattle solely on private, fenced pastures in the Grouse Flats area and used the following proactive wolf deterrence measures:

  1. Deployed range riders on a semi-daily basis to monitor cattle in fenced private pastures.

  2. Increased human presence in areas with reported wolf activity or sign.

  3. Moved cattle to avoid core wolf areas.

  4. Removed sick or injured livestock from the pastures.

  5. Maintained sanitation by removing livestock carcasses from the pastures.

 

Producer 2 grazes cattle on a U.S. Forest Service grazing allotment in the Grouse Flats area and used the following proactive wolf deterrence measures:

  1. Deployed range riders on a semi-daily basis to monitor cattle on the grazing allotment.

  2. Increased human presence in areas with reported wolf activity or sign.

  3. Delayed turnout of cattle to avoid core wolf use areas (the original turnout was scheduled for June 23, 2018 but was delayed until July 13, 2018).

  4. Removed sick or injured livestock from the allotment.

  5. Maintained sanitation by removing livestock carcasses from the allotment.

 

Producer 3 grazes cattle on a U.S. Forest Service grazing allotment in the Grouse Flats area and used the following proactive wolf deterrence measures:

  1. Deployed range riders on a semi-daily basis to monitor cattle on his USFS allotment.

  2. Increased human presence in areas with reported wolf activity or sign.

  3. Removed sick or injured livestock from the allotment.

  4. Maintained sanitation by removing livestock carcasses from the allotment.

 

Packs
Grouse Flats