Gray Wolf

Health Issues Which May Affect This Animal

What Causes This Disease?

Hydatids are the immature form of a tapeworm called Echinococcus granulosus. Echinococcus granulosus is a very small (3-5 m) tapeworm that requires two different animal species, a canid and an ungulate, to complete its lifecycle.

Where Is The Disease Found?

Hydatid disease is found around the world including North America where it exists in two forms – a domestic form involving domestic dogs and domestic sheep and a sylvatic form involving wolves or coyotes and ungulates. The most common form of E. granulosus is found in domestic dogs and sheep, and is found worldwide, including the western USA. The form in domestic dogs and domestic sheep is the most common source of the disease in humans. There are numerous strains of E .granulosus worldwide that occur in various host species systems e. g. wolves and wild ungulates in temperate North America, dingos and kangaroos in Australia, and jackels and domestic cattle in Africa. Hydatid cysts have been found in cattle and domestic sheep, deer, elk,. moose and mountain goats in Idaho. Adult tapeworms have been found in wolves and coyotes in Idaho.

Signs of Disease

The adult tapeworm occurs in the intestines of wolves, coyotes and foxes but they are generally asymptomatic. The larval form or hydatid cyst occurs in moose, elk and deer, and can occur in humans. In moose, deer, and elk, the cysts have thick walls and are filled with a clear watery liquid. The cysts are usually found in the lungs but can also occur in the liver or other organs. Cysts can vary in size from ¾ to 4 inches in diameter and contain hundreds of juvenile tapeworms. The presence of hydatids in herbivores usually does not cause clinical signs unless the cyst obstructs normal body function. If cysts rupture, illness can be severe.

Read More About Hydatid Disease

What Causes This Disease?

The lice that are found on wolves are usually Trichodectes canis.

Where Is The Disease Found?

Trichodectes canis is found in wolves across most of North America. The louse has been documented on wolves in Idaho.

Signs of Disease

Trichodectes canis on wolves is typically found in low numbers. Lice are small, about the size of a flattened rice grain, and are usually found in the groin and armpits. In large numbers, the lice tend to cause irritation and itching, which results in a diamond shaped area of hair loss over the back of the affected animals.

Read More About Lice on wolves (Trichodectes canis)

What Causes This Disease?

Sarcoptic mange is caused by a mite, Sarcoptes scabiei var canis. The mites burrow into the skin, mate and lay eggs. The eggs hatch and grow into adult mites in approximately 2 weeks.

Where Is The Disease Found?

Sarcoptic mange is found throughout North America, including Idaho.

Signs of Disease

Animals infected with sarcoptic mange typically scratch excessively and have moderate to severe hair loss. The itching often results in excoriations of the skin and oozing of serum which creates crusts over the skin. The affected skin appears dry, flaky, thickened, and wrinkled. Some animals may appear weak and thin and some may die from secondary infections. Infected animals tend to be more visible in fall and winter.

Read More About Sarcoptic Mange

What Causes This Disease?

Tapeworms are segmented worms that are usually found in the small intestine or other tubular structures of animals. There are numerous species of tapeworms that affect a variety of animals with highly variable life cycles and many sizes.

Where Is The Disease Found?

Tapeworms are found worldwide and have been reported from many species of wildlife in Idaho.

Signs of Disease

Typically animals that are infected with tapeworms show no outward signs. Tapeworms are occasionally found when animals are examined after being harvested by hunters.

Read More About Tapeworms in carnivores and ungulates

News

  • Mt lion caching elk carcass

    Wildlife CSI - Panhandle elk mortality study

    The Panhandle region placed 172 GPS radio-collars on 6-month old elk calves in the Coeur d’Alene and St. Joe River drainages since 2015.  A couple reasons we collared so many elk was to determine survival rates and for those elk that didn’t make it, find out why they died.

  • Seats available for wolf trapping certification classes in Idaho Falls, McCall and Coeur d’Alene

    Those interested in trapping wolves in Idaho are reminded that Idaho law requires you pass a mandatory wolf trapping certification class before purchasing wolf trapping tags. 

  • IDFG Commission Gavel Symbolic Image

    Fish and Game commission suspends wolf baiting proposal

    Idaho Fish and Game commissioners also discontinued proposed rulemaking to restrict use of game cameras and two-way electronic communications as aids to taking big game. 

  • Wolf trapper certification courses offered

    Trappers are reminded that Idaho rules require trappers to successfully complete a Wolf Trapper Certification course before they can purchase wolf trapping tags.

    Courses are offered periodically throughout the year, but few are taught during trapping seasons as the instructors are trappers who are out in the field running their own trap lines.

    The course includes 6.5 hours of instruction including both classroom and field experience followed by a written exam.

    Upcoming courses include:

  • Yellowstone elk

    Big game rules available

    The Idaho big game hunting brochure for 2017 and 2018 seasons is available now.

    View Big Game Rules

    The printed brochure, which contains seasons and rules for deer, elk, pronghorn, black bear, mountain lion and gray wolf, is now available at license vendors, Fish and Game offices and online. 

  • Bull elk

    Idaho’s 2017 & 2018 big game season proposals available online

    Idaho Fish and Game's proposed changes for the 2017 & 2018 big game hunting seasons are available online for public review and comment.

    The proposals for deer, elk, pronghorn, black bear, mountain lion and gray wolf are listed by region and are available at: https://idfg.idaho.gov/form/big-game-2017. Only those seasons and hunts for which changes are proposed are listed.  All others will remain the same as they were during the 2015 & 2016 hunting seasons.

  • Bull elk

    Fish and Game seeks comments on 2017 and 2018 big game seasons

    Idaho Fish and Game plans several open house meetings around the state during February to collect public comments on the 2017 and 2018 proposed seasons and rules for deer, elk, pronghorn, black bear, gray wolf and mountain lion.   

    Interested individuals can visit with department personnel concerning the proposed seasons and provide their written comments by attending any of the below meetings.

    Panhandle Region

  • winter feeding elk

    Feed sites off limits to hunting mountain lions and wolves

    With Idaho Fish and Game winter feeding big game in areas of southern Idaho, hunters are reminded that mountain lions and gray wolves may not be hunted or pursued within one-half mile of any active Fish and Game big game feeding site.  In addition, wolves cannot be trapped within the same distance. 

  • Big Game Seasons and Rules 2015 - 2016
  • Big Game Season Public Input Meeting

    The Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) is starting to collect public input to develop big game hunting season proposals for 2017 and 2018.  Big game seasons are now set for a two year period, so the hunting seasons being developed will be for the next two years.

     The first public meeting is scheduled in Sandpoint on Thursday, December 8.  The meeting will be held at the Ponderay Event Center, located at 401 Bonner Mall Way. The meeting will run from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

Gray Wolf

Canis lupus

IDAPA Classification: Big Game
View Species Profile