A second wolf known to have disbursed from the Imnaha Pack in Northeastern Oregon has made his way to Southern Oregon.
The 2-year-old male gray wolf, designated OR-25, has been in the Klamath County for about a week, according to wildlife officials. OR-25 left the Imnaha pack — the same pack OR-7, Oregon’s famed wandering wolf, disbursed from — in early April. OR-25 was captured and fitted with a GPS radio collar in 2014.
OR-7, a male gray wolf, was the first confirmed wolf in western Oregon since 1947 when he was tracked to the region in 2011, and the first in California since 1924. He originally came to Southern Oregon, then wandered into California, before returning to southeastern Jackson County with a mate in 2014. They later had at least three pups, and the wolves were dubbed the Rogue Pack by the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. John Muir, assistant district wildlife biologist with ODFW’s Klamath Falls office, said OR-25 is a “wandering teenager” much like OR-7 was when he began his journey across the state. Muir said OR-25 has traversed most of eastern Oregon, but he has never been west of the Cascades.
“He’s gone through a big chunk of land that might be wolf habitat, but he’s not necessarily following the path of OR-7,” Muir said. “We don’t know what he’s going to do. He’s moved through a ton of country. There’s no reason to think he’s going to set up shop here.” As of late, OR-25’s GPS collar has sent several signals indicating he is on or near the 5,000-acre Yamsi Ranch, located at the headwaters of the Williamson River. Yamsi is a working cattle ranch that runs 500 cows.
Yamsi partners John and Jerri Hyde say they were alerted to the wolf’s presence by ODFW officials. They have not seen OR-25 or any sign of him.“I don’t care if the wolf is here. It doesn’t bother me,” Jerri said, noting she believes wolves have been on the ranch in the past. “So far we haven’t had any trouble with it, other than it’s here and hopefully it’ll move on,” John said.
After learning OR-25 was in the vicinity, officials set up trail cameras to try to capture an image of him. Muir said based on the area the wolf has covered and the speed at which he’s moving, biologists do not believe OR-25 is traveling with a female. As of Friday, no images of OR-25 had been captured in the Klamath County area. A previous photo of OR-25 was taken when he was with the Imnaha Pack.