November 23, 2012

Oregon wolf packs are mingling, setting up a rendezvous between OR-2 and OR-4

November 23, 2012 - Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife researchers have discovered for the first time that wolves from two different wolf packs have bred.

Mollies Pack Wolves Baiting a Bison
Wolves Baiting a Bison (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Sate wolf coordinator Russ Morgan said, "This is the first time we've been able to genetically show it. This is a confirmation of the necessary genetic interchange among packs, and that is a good thing."

Morgan said while the discovery of a wolf born into one pack successfully reproducing in another is not groundbreaking, it does show that packs are dynamic and change over time.

There are now six packs in eight different areas of the state, with wolves in some areas not in a big enough group to yet be considered a wolf pack.
Wenaha River
Wenaha River (Photo credit: Pig Monkey)

The discovery was made by analyzing scat from the Wenaha pack’s pups. Each time a wolf is caught and collared by the state agency, a genetic sample is taken, Morgan said. The department confirmed with a genetic sample that OR-12 is the progeny of OR-2 of the Wenaha pack and OR-4 of the Imnaha pack.

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