Elk NetworkMinnesota Wolf Population Grows by 25 Percent

Conservation | September 27, 2017

A 2016-2017 winter survey by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) indicates there are an estimated 500 packs and 2,856 wolves in Minnesota, or a 25 percent increase since the 2015-16 survey. The survey’s margin of error is about plus or minus 500 wolves meaning the population could top 3,300.

“From approximately 2005 to 2014, a decline in prey appears to have translated into larger wolf pack territories, fewer or smaller packs and a reduced wolf population, said John Erb, DNR wolf research scientist. “Now, the reverse appears to be happening.”

This latest estimate places the overall wolf population at approximately 100 percent greater than Minnesota’s state minimum population goal of 1,600.

The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation maintains that predators have a proper place on the landscape. RMEF supports science-based management of all wildlife including wolves, elk, mountain lions, deer, bears and other species in line with the North American Wildlife Conservation Model.