Two weeks after a federal wildlife manager said he planned to kill them, wolves are still roaming the south end of Jackson Hole near residential areas and ranches.
Mike Jimenez, wolf recovery coordinator for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, said there are just two wolves — one white and one black, possibly a mating pair. The predators remain comfortable on the periphery of the Indian Trails, Indian Springs and Cottonwood Park neighborhoods and even south Wilson, near Fall Creek Road, he said.
Because the wolves often are in these areas, Jimenez has been unable to fly in a helicopter and shoot them with darts.
“It’s just not a place we can do anything,” he said. There have been no reports of wolves harassing pets, people or livestock since an Indian Trails homeowner posted a video Feb. 23 of wolves crossing his backyard, Jimenez said.
Jimenez has been tracking the wolves from the ground and by airplane. The animals have ranged from the southern end of the valley, near the South Park elk feedground, across Highway 22 to the north and as far west as Wilson. Their behavior is consistent with wolves establishing a home territory, he said.
“We know where they are, but they’re in small pockets at the far end of a field, or in someone’s backyard, and that’s not an appropriate spot” to capture and euthanize them, he said.