Wolf and reflection, NPS photo, A.D. CareyBlack Wolf, NPS Photo, T. UlrichWolf, NPS photo, A.D. Carey

Driven to near extinction in the lower 48 states, the gray wolf (Canis lupus) population within the Crown of the Continent has rebounded since the 1980s when wolves from British Columbia began recolonizing the North Fork of the Flathead Valley in Montana. The North Fork is an important migration corridor for the species as they travel between Canada and the U.S.

With land that encompasses both sides of an international border, and is managed by federal and state agencies within the U.S., wolves in the Crown fall under the management jurisdictions of several agencies. Listed as an endangered species in 1973, wolves in the U.S. Northern Rocky Mountain portion of the Crown were recently considered recovered by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and were delisted in 2011. With the recent delisting, management of wolves now falls under the jurisdiction of individual state agencies in the U.S. Provincial agencies continue to manage wolves in Canada.

Considered shy and elusive, wolves habitually avoid humans but have proven to be tolerant of human activities. However, studies have shown that humans account for 80-90% of wolf mortality. Recent wolf research in the Crown has involved fitting wolves with radio collars and setting out remote cameras to monitor their movements.