Wolf season to close in Unit 2

KETCHIKAN — Biologists with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game have announced the impending emergency closure of wolf hunting and trapping seasons in Game Management Unit 2, which includes Prince of Wales and a series of small adjacent islands, according to a release from the department Thursday.

An Emergency Order has been issued that closes the wolf trapping and hunting seasons in Unit 2 at 11:59 p.m. on Wednesday, 19 March.

Unit 2 currently has a seasonal harvest limit of 60 wolves, which is 30 percent of the estimated fall wolf population. After several consecutive seasons of low wolf harvests in Unit 2, harvests reached high levels during the current and last year’s seasons. This increase is believed to have been due in part to mild winter weather that kept much of the Unit 2 road system snow-free and accessible to trappers and thereby facilitated high trapper participation and effort. With the harvest nearing 60, biologists have been monitoring the harvest closely to ensure the unit’s wolf population is managed for long-term sustainability.

All other hunting and trapping seasons in Unit 2 remain unchanged and are not affected by this emergency order. Department staff have been in discussions with federal managers, who are implementing a concurrent closure to federal wolf hunting and trapping seasons in Unit 2 as well.

Call the Ketchikan area office at 907-225-2475 or Craig Area office at 907-826-2561 for more information.

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