The Once Mighty Yellowstone Druid Peak Pack Down To Just One Wolf….

This is the saddest wolf news I’ve heard and that’s saying something in a season of bad wolf news.  The once mighty Druids, who ruled the Lamarr Valley in Yellowstone for so many years, the wolves that people came from all over the world to view, who’ve had several documentaries made of their lives, are now down to just one wolf.  Six Druids are missing.

The Druids were hit with mange and lost pups to parvo but this could be the end of them as a pack.  How unbelievable this would happen now when wolves are being hunted for the first time since their reintroduction and over 500 wolves died in the Northern Rockies in 2009.  I have no words to describe the sadness I feel about the demise of the legendary Druid Peak Pack, though their genes will live on in their offspring.


Kathie Lynch: Druid wolf pack likely to fade away

Only one Druid is known to remain-


End of an era in Yellowstone?

 March 03, 2010 Jeff Welsch | GYC


Famed Yellowstone wolf pack down to 1 member

By The Associated Press

March 07, 2010, 12:11PM


Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Posted in: gray wolf/canis lupus, Yellowstone wolves

 Tags: Druid Peak Pack, mange, parvo, legendary wolf pack


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Published in: on March 1, 2010 at 10:41 pm  Comments (26)  
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  1. This news breaks my heart. The Druids were the best example of a thriving wolf pack in their heyday and their presence will be sorely missed.

    • Hi Lyndell,
      This is heartbreaking to me as well. My question is how could the park allow this to happen? They radio collar the wolves all the time, they’re always handling them. Why not treat the mange if that’s what truly did them in. This pack was legendary and the first pack to form there after the reintroduction. It’s just unbelievable to me.


    • I am so sad, I remember my last visit to Yellowstone where we were lucky enough to site a member of the Druid pack I stood amazed while we watched her frolic thru the valley.

  2. I have said this before. Arguably the most famous and revenue producing wolfs in the world. The mighty Yellowstone Druids! Now, instead of making history they have sadly…become history. What does Montana Fish and Game have to say about it? “Be patient, we are going to make mistakes”. In reality, if the trade off of poor professional judgment with hope for personal advancement along with the smell of political influence bothers you contact the individuals responsible for this tragedy. Carolyn Simes at or Joe Maurier at Stand up and be counted!

    • Marc…..My question is how could they allow them to disappear like this without doing something? These wolves were legends and people came from all over the world to see them. If it was the mange that was killing them off, why not treat it?


  3. Agreed – from what I’ve read on the internet, mange is simple to treat. Ivermectin is the 1st choice although one web-site said it wasn’t effective against sarcoptic mange. Another web-site had the HW medicine Interceptor as being effective against sarcoptic mange. I can’t see why park officials wouldn’t want to treat the wolves for it – I know they couldn’t treat every single wolf, but they could have prevented it from spreading to the point of pack extinction. I don’t understand why there wasn’t an intervention on some level. I also read that mange was introduced in Montana in 1910 as a bio-terror weapon against wolves – why am I not surprised? Here we are 100 years later and the wolf killing continues. It makes me sick. Are any other species affected, i.e. coyotes, foxes?

    • Lyndell,
      I have no idea why they would allow the pack to disappear and not even attempt to treat the mange. Mange does effect foxes and coyotes as well. Some people are speculating that the six missing members of the Druids ran off someplace in Yellowstone to claim new territory. I find that highly unlikely but who knows. They certainly don’t have the strength in numbers to be able to dominate Lamarr so maybe they did go off somewhere. One can only hope!!


  4. Nabeki –
    I am beyond words right now concerning the future state of our wild western wolves. I cannot accept that the Druids are gone. My prayer is that 480 is forming his new pack and will very soon make his appearance by running triumphantly out of the trees along the Lamar River and shout “WE’RE HERE”! I believe our local guides have received a permit for an Anti-Wolf Rally here in Jackson on March 20. I will be trying to put together a counter presence on that day.

    • Cindy,
      I am heartbroken with you. I can’t understand how Yellowstone could let them slip away? If it was mange that did them in, it’s treatable. They could have made an exception for the Druids. I hope you are right and they have slipped away to form another pack.
      I can only hope Judge Molloy will relist them soon. But that will not stop WS or the 10j rule they like to use to kill wolves. But at least it will stop the hunts and the craziness that’s going on.

      I hope you put together a big group of wolf adovcates to show that wolves are not alone and have support. We are their only voice.

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,

  5. Yellowstone Park Wolf Biologists were able to place collars on 7 of the remaining 14 adult wolves in this pack last year, but they can’t treat them for mange because”it is not natural”? Give me a break.

    • Hi Larry,
      I’m still stunned the Park is so flip about the demise of the Druids. Doug Smith said something like the Druids are kaput? What? These are the desendants of the very animals that he hand carried into the park. I don’t understand why they wouldn’t do eveything they could to preserve a pack of wolves that have had several documentaries made of their lives, were a draw for people all over the planet. In other words beloved by so many. Yet they can just let them fade into history because it wasn’t “natural” to treat their mange but as you said it was “natural” to dart and collar them routinely? I don’t get it and never will.

      I wonder what Bob Landis thinks about this?


  6. The beauty of Yellowstone is that it is wild, and they don’t interfere. The only time they might somewhat aid a wolf, as told to me by Dan Stahler of the YWP, is when they are collaring , and may give some meds or remove a collar that is too small at that time, but they let nature take its course. I viewed the 690 wolf and it was sad to see her with mange, and was there when Rick McIntyre found her Druid sister dead in Lamar Canyon. She had mange as well but died from injuries, partly due to a fight with the 06 wolf. So here is the good news about the Druids…the 06 wolf was born into teh Agate Pack, and her grandparents are Druids. She is the grand daughter of wolf 21 and I believe wolf 40. If you remember wolf 21, …what a remarkable animal. I watched the 06 take down three bull elk all by herself in February(in one week!) and now through Laurie Lyman’s notes who has been watcheing 06, she has at least three pups from this dening season. I was lucky enough to get photos of her in the tie with wolf 755(which is what they call her pack right now) They are on my wolfwatcher website… so while the Druids may not be the Druids that we all remember they certainly live on through this majestic alpha female called 06. She is quite the wolf and undoubtedly my all time favorite as such an early age. She was just observed to have a seven hour standoff with a grizzly while protecting her den.

    • Thanks Dave for sharing! The Druids are icons to me as well. Their passing is very sad. I truly wish they had intervened and treated the mange though. They do so many other invasive things to the wolves, always collaring and darting them…they are not hands off. So I think that’s being a little disingenious when they say they have to keep hands off.

      The 06 female sounds amazing. She is showing off her Druid genes in fine fashion. I have to get to Yellowstone, it’s been so long since I’v been. I do get a chance to see wolves here but not anywhere as often and with the continued assault on them, who knows if I’ll ever be able to view them in the wild the same again.

      The Yellowstone wolves aren’t out of danger because of the hunts. If they cross over the borders and take a jaunt during hunting season they could meet the same fate as the Cottonwoods did last year. No wolf is safe anymore. That is the saddest legacy of the delisting.


  7. I might add that when talking with Dan he said as a biologist they let nature take care of itself in Yellowstone, but as a wolf watcher it is sometimes hard to separate the biological part of it from the human part of it as well, and of course they have their favorite wolves like everyone else. I respected that so much because I too wanted them to go out to 690 and treat her. I saw her as a yearling and enjoyed her so much,,,its so easy to get taken in by them. We adopted the Druids and I watch videos of them still, but I am waiting for Bob Landis to film this 06 wolf as I am sure he has her in his sights, and probably watching her pack in Slough right now. I am going back to watch her(and the others of course) in a couple weeks and hopefully will be back here with some good pup news. Dave

    • Thank you,Dave,for sharing.I enjoyed reading it.I will always remember the Druids.They live on in my heart.

      • You are so welcome Rita. I miss them too, They are truly our ambassadors of Yellowstone.


  8. Hi Nabeki,

    The wolf hunts may double or triple this coming hunting season and that is some scary news once again. Nathan Varley and his wife Linda Thurston started a proposal to create a barrier around the Park for future hunts and I carry it on my homepage. If you would like to post it please do as they want to protect wolves, esp in the areas of Slough, Hell Roaring, Crevice, and Buffalo Fork.It is in the form of a take action petition with contact numbers. The more people that contact the reps in Montana the better.

    • Hi Dave,
      It’s truly a grim time for wolves. I think it’s a good idea to demand a buffer zone around Yellowstone but Glacier is also affected and then I think of all the wolves that aren’t living in the park, how sad for them. I will definitely post the proposal but more importantly we need people to send in comments to protest the Montana FWP Commission proposed increases in wolf hunt quotas for 2010. That is going to truly do wolves in if these quotas are passed. The public comment period ends June 14, so we haven’t much time. I will be posting more this week. The info is also on my FB page.

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,

  9. Hi i am from new zealand where we dont have any wolves which is sad for me because i have allways thought them to be one of the most special and majestic creatures. I have watched the stories of the yellowstone wolves and i to feel greatly sad to go online to see the title “druid pack down to one”. I take the protection of one of our most special keystone predators very seriously because i imagine a world without wolves would be a horrible reality. Wolf protection needs to beefed up. More effort spent in keeping them from ranchers and education to change their long held bad image and importantly strong sanctions and imprisonment for wolf killers as they are an endangered species. I do feel sad for the druids but i guess they have to stay away from intervening with nature. Mange must have allways been a bane for canis lupis and is natures cruel way. What isnt is mass killing from us and habbitat destruction. This is not natural. We must do what we can to stop an ignorant few destroying something almost so close to us in so many ways.

    thank you

    • Hi adam,

      Welcome to our pack. It’s so good to hear from people around the world that support wolves yet many people where they live want to kill them. It’s so ironic isn’t it? As for mange and the Druids. Mange was introduced into the wild wolf population by the state of Montana around 1910, they seemed to be trying any brutal way to kill wolves.. In Yellowstone they chase the wolves with helicopters to dart and collar them. That’s intrusive, there is no reason why they couldn’t have treated the mange since the state hadn’t introduced it a hundred years ago. In Kenya, two leopard researchers treated a leopard and her cubs with Ivermectin by darting them, to treat their mange, They healed in a few weeks. Yellowstone biologists could have done the same for the Druids but they did nothing and let the iconic Druids drift away. I’ll never understand that.

      I so agree with your statement: “We must do what we can to stop an ignorant few destroying something almost so close to us in so many ways.” Well said.

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,

  10. Just another example of ‘the man’ destroying mother earth’s children. They wouldn’t treat the mange as it’s ‘not natural to do so’, but the mange was introduced by men so therefore it is not naturally occurring either. The question remains that would mange have still made it’s way to Yellowstone anyways without introducing it there? In any case, treating the mange would be more natural.

    • Hi Bri,
      My gripe about not treating the mange is the wolves are handled anyway in Yellowstone. They are darted and collared, which is definitely contact. What’s the difference if they would dart them with Ivermectin to get rid of the mange. They did it with wild leopards in Africa and they were healed in a few weeks. Also the mange mite can live in the moist conditions under the collars, so it seems to me the biologists owe the wolves relief from the mange since the collars can provide the mites a place to breed.

      For the wolves, For the wild ones,

  11. hey –

    i was wondering if you can tell me where you got the picture of the wold pack at the top of this post. i kinda wanna buy it…

    • Jeff that pic is on Wikipedia Commons. It’s in the public domain.


  12. [...] The Once Mighty Yellowstone Druid Peak Pack Down To Just One …Mar 1, 2010 … The once mighty Druids, who ruled the Lamarr Valley in Yellowstone for so many years, the wolves that people came from all over the world to … [...]

  13. It saddens me to hear that our donation, Canadian wolves, are now being hunted where they were sent to repopulate the species. I understand none of the Canadian wolves still survive, but those descendents carry Canadian wolf blood. I see that the American people have learned nothing from their former mistakes where they completely wiped out the species before. Now you wish to do it again. So be it, but next time you need to replenish US wildlife stocks, I will be completely against Canada supporting such a act. I hope you wake up before its too late once again.

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