Wolf News: Results of lab analysis of scat collected from the Shasta Pack

June 2016

As an update to the earlier lab analysis (October 2015) of presumed wolf scat from the Shasta Pack, nine more potential genetic samples (collected scat and hair) were submitted to the University of Idaho in late October 2015. DNA was successfully isolated from one hair and four scat samples, which resulted in the genetic identification of three new individuals from the Shasta Pack. Six unique Shasta Pack individuals have now been identified, including the breeding male, breeding female, one female pup, and three male pups. Of particular interest is that the genetic analysis indicates the breeding male was also born into the Imnaha Pack of northeast Oregon.

October 5, 2015

A number of scat presumed to be from the Shasta Pack was collected and submitted to the Laboratory for Ecological, Evolutionary and Conservation Genetics at the University of Idaho this past August. Based on the size of the scat collected, CDFW scientists believe that adult and pup scat was gathered.

Of the four samples submitted, DNA was extracted from three confirming that they were indeed gray wolves. Further, the Idaho lab also has a large database of genetic information collected from gray wolves in Idaho and Oregon, as well as Washington and British Columbia.

Unique Shasta Pack genotypes were identified (one adult-female and two pups-male and female) and a comparison with known genotypes from Oregon wolves did not reveal a match. However, the Shasta Pack genotypes are highly related to the Imnaha Pack of northeastern Oregon. This indicates that at least the breeding female was born into the Imnaha Pack.