Oregon’s Famous Wolf Welcomes More Pups

Around this time last year, wolf advocates celebrated news that after traveling thousands of miles alone looking for love and a new home, Oregon’s famous lone wolf OR-7 had found a mate and welcomed a litter of pups into the world.

Now wolf advocates are celebrating confirmation that not only are the three known pups who were born last year thriving, but the family, now formally known as the Rogue Pack, has welcomed yet another litter this spring.

Remote cameras caught last year’s pups playing in the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest in late June and officials collecting the cameras found pup scat in the area, which led to the recent confirmation of more pups.

In 2011, the former loner became famous for becoming the first confirmed wolf west of the Cascades since the last wolf bounty was collected as part of a government-sponsored predator control program in 1947 and for being the first known wolf to venture into California since 1924.

Since he first started making headlines, OR-7 has garnered a following of fans, inspired a documentary about his travels and an expedition retracing his steps, but most importantly, his adventures have brought hope that wolves can beat the odds stacked against them and continue to disperse and establish new territories in their historic range.

“This second litter of pups highlights just how much potential there is for wolf recovery in the West,” said Amaroq Weiss, West Coast wolf organizer for the Center for Biological Diversity. “OR-7 traveled 4,000 miles to find a mate and start a family. But this important recovery can only continue if we keep protecting wolves in Oregon and across the United States.”

While the fate of wolves hangs in the balance as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service considers stripping them of federal endangered species protections and a slew of anti-wolf bills make their way through Congress their advocates are still working to keep them safe.

Since OR-7 first ventured into California, wolves have gained protection by the state as endangered species, but Oregon’s wolves are now in danger of losing protection themselves.

Even though there are now only 77 wolves in Oregon and there’s strong public support for continued protection there, state wildlife officials are still moving forward with plans to delist them.

According to the Center for Biological Diversity, Oregon has the capacity to support 1,400 wolves, but under the state’s wolf management plan, they can be delisted once four breeding pairs are counted for three consecutive years in the eastern part of the state. That goal was met earlier this year, which automatically triggered the review.

Their advocates, however, argue that it’s still far too soon to remove protection and that doing so would jeopardize not only what has been accomplished so far, but their ability to continue to expand.

“The return of wolves is clearly something that unites Oregonians who appreciate native wildlife and value the natural world,” said Oregon Wild Northeast Oregon Field Coordinator Rob Klavins. “With the public’s support, Oregon has implemented the most successful wolf recovery plan in the nation – a plan that prioritizes preventing conflict and has allowed the wolf population to grow. But it’s too soon to declare ‘Mission Accomplished.’ Wolves still need protection.”

For more info on how to help keep Oregon’s wolves protected, check out Oregon Wild.

Photo credit: Thinkstock

225 comments

donald Baumgartner

Interesting !!! Thanks for sharing !!!!

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Siyus Copetallus
Siyus Copetallus1 years ago

Thank you for sharing.

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Jennifer H.
Jennifer H2 years ago

Cattle ranchers will lie, cheat and steal to prove that wolves are the almighty killer of their property and I believe the useless DFG / USFWS / BLM or whatever acronym the respective departments go under are in their pockets. Until we can fight this battle on an even playing field I fear wolves will be on the losing end.

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Gabino Arizola
Gabino Arizola2 years ago

This is So Special! I am Truly ELATED To see OR-7 Start a Family(Pack) I was Part of the Group that initiated the Wolf introduction into the Lower 48 in the 82-85 Season Into The Idaho Region which was on Land given by Tribal Elders for the Introduction. Being Shoshone Indian this was extra Special to Me. But now seeing what Gov. Otter has done and is proposed with his "Goon Squad" and Waged War on all Wolves in the State of Idaho. The Ranchers refuse as well as USFS & USF&G help from Defenders of Wildlife for non-lethal methods of help to contain and protect any interactions between Sheep Ranchers who Free graze in National Forest and kill All Wolves who come near they're Flocks! That's just like dangling Raw meat in front of a Lion and not expect it to eat it! But Gov. Otter is behind all of this His comments fuel the Hatred" I Hate Wolves' I can't Wait For the Permits to come out, I'll be first in line to buy Mine." Words of this nature from a leader of the Mother State that Opened the Operation to Have wolves back into the Lower 48 then to take control from the Lemhi Indian Reservation Biologist and The Land so the could start Hunting The Now Dwindled Wolves! At last known count there were only of an Estimated 228 wolves the latest Count was Down To less than 102 . That's Before this years Season had been counted and any Illegal kills that don't get reported. So I am Happy For OR-7 I Wish This Pack Great Success! Any Help Please contact Me Im always ready to lend

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Michael M.
Michael M2 years ago

to finish this damn "causes" truncation of comment: through the REAL pressures of pleasure-killer lobbies on govenfrment at every level.
It takes YOUR voice, your support.
There are numerous population ecologists who understand that minimum wolf populations need to be in the thousands, to become ecologically effective.
FWS is compromising, as for 40 years they have known of the power of those who will kill illegally and escape justice, and those who will erase Endangered Species Act, NEPA, and the very public lands that hold all of life's real treasure. You need to effectively end gunsas pleasure tool, end those attacks upon the conservation structure of the USA, and stop attacking like some rabid animal, every agency mandated to restore and retain ecological and species health. Now.

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Michael M.
Michael M2 years ago

Oregon is divided into recovery areas, East of the cascades on the east side of the highways, wolves are regarded as in the Northern rockies population segment, and only OR and presently WA wolves are AT ALL PROTECTED there.
THe problem is the quite few depredations which have or might occurred on Eastern OR cattle and sheep growers. There is some fantastic new tech that can prevent depredation and conflict (as the ranchers who experience it do materially suffer, and their fear and money makes the associations representing them extremely powerful)

Oregon is not as completely
progressive as you believe, with a large pleasure-hunting contingent, who pour THEIR money into costly semiautomatic "hunting " weapons, and into such orgs as the NRA and RMEF, and other antipredator groups.
Yet, OR-&, his mate and pups are safe, as federal protection and OR protection will remain. I'm watching the polling and propaganda, and if you are able to check my news submissions (however angry I can be at times over pleasure killing and certain ranchers believing they should override all social mores and public land controls (which are weak, and need your support, as does the USFWS, which the more violent you get, desires to withdraw from the fray)
So, cease to vilify the FWS, as they fear both fed legislature and states intransigence. They need YOU to overcome the problems of for instance AZ F&G and all the commissions in each state made of Euroamerican pleasure killers, appointed

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Michael M.
Michael M2 years ago

That documentary will be shown again in West Yellowstone, MT on August 7 Friday evening, as part of the opening for the "Speak for Wolves" gathering.

There are excellent additional documentaries (and some less excellent; I recommend the work of Jim and Jamie Dutcher at living with wolves website to find some of their books and cinematography) on youtube and vimeo.
I hope that ALL of you who are involved in primary education take the opportunity to go to the August 7-9 conference and will also directly seek such material to use this coming school year to help your students learn about a misunderstood and highly intelligent social animal.
OR-7's producer is eager to give you his film, and the Dutchers are eager to spread a truer understanding of teh gray wolf.I highly recommend their lates book "the Secret Life of Wolves."

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Miya Eniji
Miya Eniji2 years ago

Joan H. wrote, [ i hope and prey that...] great typo- or is it ?!
laffed so hard, started 2 koff...^o^

Need that comic relief... 'cos this topic is worrisome.
How about showing schoolchildren in those states Nat Geo material which documents how Yosemite ( or Yellowstone, i mix them up?) National park starts to recover from over-grazing when wolves re-introduced.
Some children may actually care, and tell others.

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Lindsay Kemp
Lindsay K2 years ago

Good news, but they still need protection.

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Sue Matheson
Sue Matheson2 years ago

thanks

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