People who track wolves for a living say the largest wolf pack in the West now roams the backcountry of northwest Wyoming. The Jackson Hole (Wyoming) News and Guide reports that at last count, there were 24 wolves in the pack, dubbed the Lava Mountain Pack, roaming the Gros Ventre hill country, approximately 30 miles northeast of Jackson. That's nine more than any other pack recently surveyed in Idaho, Oregon, Montana, Washington or Wyoming.
"That’s a very large pack,” Mike Jimenez, Northern Rocky Mountain wolf coordinator for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service told the News and Guide. “They actually had a double litter a year ago, and that’s uncommon.”
But Jimenez was quick to add that the pack's days are probably numbered.
"Big packs don't stay big for very long," Jimenez told the News and Guide.
In early April, the Idaho Department of Fish and Game issued a report indicating that there were at least 770 wolves in the Gem State with a minimum of 26 breeding pairs. But conservationists quickly pushed back, saying that those numbers were based primarily on anecdotal information from hunters rather than trained professionals.