(KMSP) - Minnesota’s wolf population has increased 25 percent, according to a new survey from the Department of Natural Resources.
The state’s wolf population had remained stable for four years, before increasing this past year. The 2016-2017 wolf population survey estimates there were approximately 500 wolf packs and 2,856 wolves in Minnesota, compared to approximately 439 packs and 2,278 wolves in 2015-2016.
According to the survey, the increase in wolf population is consistent with an increase in deer density in Minnesota’s wolf range.
The wolf population survey is conducted in mid-winter when lack of foliage makes it easier to count pack size from a plane. The pack counts represent the minimum estimates because they exclude the population spike that comes with the birth of pups in the spring.
Minnesota’s wolves are currently listed as a threatened species.