When the Smackout Pack was confirmed in NE Washington in 2011 there were 5 pack members recorded. By 2013 the pack had 12 members.Gray wolves from the Smackout Pack dispersed and formed three new packs – the Dirty Shirt, Carpenter Ridge and Ruby Creek (details below) pack’s. There has been speculation that pack split up due to the tragic loss of the breeding adult male in 2014 when he was killed by a cougar.
Current numbers: 8. Counted as successful breeding pair in 2015.
Pack status: Designated in 2011.
Ruby Creek Pack: On March 9, 2014 it was confirmed that the Ruby Creek Pack had been formed by two female wolves that split off from the Smackout Pack in northeast Washington. During the following winter one of the female wolves mated with a domestic dog. She was captured, spayed and returned to the wild. That spring she was struck and killed by a motor vehicle.
The remaining member of the Ruby Creek Pack became known as Ione, after the town that she was living close to. The Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife became concerned that Ione was becoming habituated to people. On February 11th, 2015 Ione was tranqulized and transported to Wolf Haven Sanctuary, where she currently resides. Ione shares an enclosure with male wolfdog Luca and the two seem very attached to one another.
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