‘Shasta Pack’ suggests evidence of return of gray wolves to California
SISKIYOU COUNTY, Calif. — Where once it was thought to be just one, there now appear to be seven gray wolves roaming around in Northern California’s Siskiyou County.
California Department of Fish and Wildlife officials released a photo Thursday showing five gray wolf pups joined by a pair of adult wolves.
It’s the third set of photos to emerge since May in which gray wolves were seen in southeastern Siskiyou County, located northwest of the Truckee-Tahoe region on the southern border of Oregon.
After trail cameras recorded a lone male gray wolf in May and July, CDFW officials set up additional cameras in the hopes of capturing further evidence of the species’ return to California.
Further, CDFW officials believe the evidence suggests the proximity with which the adult male previously photographed in May and July is prompting scientists to believe he may be associated with the group of pups, now dubbed the “Shasta Pack.”
“This news is exciting for California,” said Charlton H. Bonham, CDFW director. “We knew wolves would eventually return home to the state and it appears now is the time.”
In December 2011, the now famous wolf OR-7 made its way into California, last seen wandering toward Oregon more than a year ago.
Wild wolves historically inhabited California, but were destroyed. Prior to the arrival OR-7, the last confirmed wolf in California was in 1924, researchers said.
CDFW is currently drafting a wolf management plan and is expected to release it soon.