Spring 2024


The USGS Superior National Forest Wolf and Deer Research Project
By Sarah Hoy

During his personal time in 1966, Dr. L. David Mech began examining and gathering specimens from wolf-killed deer in a portion of the Superior National Forest. That work ultimately led to a study that lasted 56 years. Here, we take a look back at the study’s background, location and results. Download Now.

The Superior National Forest Wolf Study: from Collecting to Reporting
By Debra  Mitts-Smith

The work begun by Mech and continued by a new generation of technicians, interns and graduate students helped reveal the lives of wolves in the wild not only to biologists, but to the public as well.

Research findings enhance knowledge of the dance of life, and death
By Tracey O’Connell

The study of wolves in and around the Superior National Forest also contributed to the knowledge base of many inter-related subject areas including prey animals, their survival strategies and ways in which winter weather and food availability affect succeeding generations. Here we look at studies that advanced knowledge of these diverse but related topics.

The Study’s Methodology
By Dr. L. David Mech

The first words written about the study of wolves and deer in the Superior National Forest were brief: “Fresh wolf tracks, at least two sizes of wolves.” From those humble beginnings in a notebook to radio collars and more, the study’s methodology changed as the years ticked by. Mech looks back on the study’s methodology.



From the Executive Director

The Superior National Forest Wolf-Deer Study
by Grant Spickelmier

In mid-2023, I had the opportunity to attend the “Wolves Across Borders” conference in Stockholm, Sweden. Over four days, I attended dozens of talks and workshops describing the rapid recolonization of wolves across much of their former range in Europe and the unique challenges of managing a species across multiple international boundaries.