Press Release

Wolverine inadvertently taken by trapper in Salmon area

Wolverine are protected, and rarely caught in traps

An Idaho trapper on Dec. 8 reported finding a dead adult female wolverine that was inadvertently caught in his trap in Lemhi County. The trapper turned the carcass in to Fish and Game, as required by law. . 

Wolverines are native to Idaho and have been protected by state law since 1965. In 2013, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service proposed listing wolverines in the contiguous U.S. as a threatened species, but Idaho officials maintain listing them is not warranted

Wolverines are reclusive, rarely seen, and wolverines being being caught in traps intended for other animals is a rare occurrence. Fish and Game records show only 17 cases of incidental wolverine trapping in 43 years. In eight of those cases, the animals were released alive.

Wolverines are typically found in remote, high-elevation areas and at low densities, but have been reported in about three-quarters of Idaho counties. Fish and Game is currently monitoring wolverine populations, and data compiled in the last decade suggests wolverines occur in most, if not all, historically occupied and suitable habitat in the state.