(Host) Researchers and volunteers are taking advantage of this winter’s snows to search for wolves. A study coordinated by the Montpelier office of the National Wildlife Federation is concentrating on the most remote areas of the region. It’s the first time there’s been an extensive effort to find out if there are wolves living in northern New England.
Peggy Struhsaker of the Wildlife Federation says isolated wolves have already been found in Maine. She says researchers hope to find out if they’re residents, or visitors from a large wolf population north of the Saint Lawrence River in Quebec.
(Struhsacker) “Wolves have the capability of travelling very long distances in a very short time. Maine has had two animals in the 1990s that were killed. So it’s very possible that we have animals moving in and out of our region. But whether we have a sustainable population or even a breeding population, right now we can’t say for sure.”
(Host) Struhsacker says the government is considering taking wolves off the endangered species list because they’re well established in other areas of the country. If there is a wolf population in New England, she says it should be protected.
Struhsacker says the study will concentrate on the Connecticut Lakes area of Northern New Hampshire and areas of far northern Maine:
(Struhsacker) “We are concentrating on the areas where there is habitat for them. Lots of prey for them. And not a whole lot of people.”
(Host) Struhsacker says biologists and volunteers will continue their search as long as there is snow on the ground. There hasn’t been a confirmed wolf population in New England since the 1800s.