No, this is not the lead to the new “Snakes on a Plane” cult movie. However, it is a Canadian invasion of sorts. Four Canadian wolves were air-dropped into Lake Superior’s Isle Royale National Park in Michigan to augment the island’s dwindling wolf population and to control the resulting rising Moose population. That might seem an unfair advantage when the perspective of the moose but the park long had a wonderful balance between the populations of wolves and moose. I have a particularly interest in Isle Royale because I have spent many weeks backpacking around the island when I lived in Chicago.
I adore the park and the ecosystem on the island. I was surprised by the drop in the wolf population.
The moose population has reached 1,500. If I recall, it used to be around 1,200 when I regularly backpacked the area. The wolf pack will now number eight.
The National Park Service captured the three males and one female Canadian wolves Michipicoten Island in Ontario and dropped them from helicopters. This is really good news for the park and all of us who love it.
Isle Royale also has a wonderful history to go with its wonderful ecosystem. There is evidence cooper mining from prehistoric time. The island was a part of the 1783 treaty with Great Britain negotiated by Benjamin Franklin and others. It was viewed as strategically valuable for both its location and its cooper deposits.
Of course, as Canadians they will be given time off to watch hockey.
The National Park Service hopes to take 20 to 30 wolves to Isle Royale over the next several years.