Michigan wolf population stable

Jun 14, 2018

A shot of two wolves taken during a previous population survey.
Credit Michigan Department of Natural Resources

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources has announced there are at least 662 wolves and 139 packs in the Upper Peninsula, according to a population survey conducted this year.

Wolves have rebounded since the 1980’s, when they returned to the U.P. from neighboring states and Canada. Over the past few years the population has held steady between 600 and 700 wolves, indicating that wolf numbers are stabilizing in Michigan.

“Research suggests prey availability and the geographical area of the U.P. are the key limiting factors of wolf population expansion,” said Kevin Swanson, a wildlife management specialist with the DNR’s Bear and Wolf Program in Marquette. “This is proving to be true.”

The DNR says wolf populations in Wisconsin and Minnesota also remain strong. Wolves are still a federally-protected species.