Washington’s newest wolf pack, the Loup Loup, has taken up residence near the towns of Twisp and Omak in Okanogan County.
The Methow pack was confirmed by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Tuesday, following a cluster of public wolf sightings. The wolves, previously undocumented in the area, moved in on their own, continuing a westward expansion from Idaho and Montana.
The confirmation of the newest pack brings Washington’s total minimum number of packs to 17, nearly all of them east of the Cascades. Wolves have also been spotted in the North Cascades near Hozomeen, Whatcom County, where they have been moving back and forth across the border with Canada. Federal and state wildlife agents intend to monitor the newest pack over the winter, and get a radio collar on one of the wolves in the summer of 2016 to follow the pack’s travels.
Ann Froschauer, spokeswoman for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, said the precise number of animals in the Loup Loup Pack is not yet known, but biologists tracked up to six animals traveling together in recent snows.