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Are there wolves in Indian Valley?

Nothing makes neighbors more excited or anxious than a wild animal sighting on their property in Indian Valley.

In the past few weeks, residents have been talking outside the post offices and markets and online on social media about their wolf sightings.

Sometimes the information can be misleading —you read of a wolf kill and you think it’s next door when it’s in Oregon or another state.

By all accounts, sightings started to take place roughly a year ago, with much more frequency in the last few months and often more than one wolf at a time.

Here’s a sample list of recent sightings by locals of the Lassen Wolf Pack now taking up residence in the area.

Misty Banchio reported that six of the 55 students on her bus witnessed three wolves watching them at a bus stop. It was approximately 7 a.m. on the north side of North Arm Road.

Joyce VanFleet Wansgard identified a wolf by Cooks Creek Bridge on Friday, Jan. 19, at about 7 a.m., roughly the same time a calf was killed in the area. There was also a wolf sighting by multiple people the day before near Lights Creek Bridge.

Merri Schramel saw one on the morning of Jan. 6, around 8:30 a.m., at the edge of her horse pasture off Genesee Road.

Heather Kingdon and her granddaughter came across one while feeding their cows Dec. 28.

The Thursday before Christmas, Valerie and Randy Pew spotted one on Arlington Road by the Kearns’ driveway.

Most sightings have been in the early morning and spread from the Genesee area to Arlington Road; North Arm to Diamond Mountain Road.

How can you tell a wolf from a coyote, which have also been sighted? The gray wolf is going to be bigger for one thing — ranging from 70 to 150 pounds, with a gray coat, but can be black, white or cream. Its ears are shorter and rounder than a coyote’s, with a larger nose pad and a blockier and broader physique. It’s about 2 feet longer than a coyote on average, too. Young wolves are difficult to tell apart from coyotes.

The California Department of Fish and Wildlife on its website reiterates that instances of “wolves attacking or killing humans is extremely rare.”

The CDFW’s website has a page titled “Gray Wolf Sighting Report” where Indian Valley residents can submit a description of their sightings and upload any photos. It also encourages the reporting of any killed animals immediately to  225-2300 or [email protected].

8 thoughts on “Are there wolves in Indian Valley?

  • Please to the Residents of Indian Valley”You Are Safe from Gray Wolves Even Considering Attacking Human’s and If You Now are Seeing Wolves here and there at a distance which it will always be because,Wolves are Human’s Allies Not Our Evil Enemy as So many Would Like you to Believe…” for what a Thousand Years We Human Beings of the North American Continent Have walked Beside these Keystone Predators Without Many of us Even Realizing Wolves Were There and No Human Has Ever Been Stalked and Attacked By A Gray Wolf in the Lower 48 States in Recorded History!.. They are Highly Intelligent and Family Oriented Predatory Land Based Mammals Not Charles Manson or Jack the Ripper and the Benefits to the Regions Wildlife and Wilderness is…

  • Strong traditional & scientific support for Mr. Collins’ comment exists. Insight can be found in Dr. Gordon Haber & others’ work.
    Schoolteachers would do well to add the interesting research on wolves to curricula. “Living With Wolves” a project initiated by Nat. Geographic writers/photographers JIm & Jamie Dutcher, who observed the first Gray Wolves returned to Idaho, supplies classroom material – good overviews of wolves, their culture and social life.
    Mr. Collins is not completely correct, but evidence relating to the cognitive and memory capacities of involved wolves not known by those who popularize fear, mitigates the issue. Traditional views: see Ojibwe and Oneida origin tales recognizing our relationship with wolf and all…

    • Thank you for your wonderful comments. I use all of the tools you mention to educate our citizens and am preparing to take this to the local schools. I have a nonprofit called Sundance Wildlife Conservancy, Inc. that rehabs local wildlife and rescues wolfdogs. And I run California Wolf Watch which patrols the wolfs to help keep them safe from poachers. We are sending the schools our information to hopefully get an invitation to bring our knowledge and educational tools and maybe even our Ambassador wolfdogs! Thanks again for protecting our wildlings!

  • Whether wolves do or don’t attack humans, the residents of Plumas County will not appreciate wolves killing their livestock, dogs or cats.

    The California Cattlemen’s Association has a law suit pending against the State for their decision to list wolves as endangered species, which limits CA residents ability to protect their property. If they take any action against the predators they can face large fines and jail time for defending their property.

    • OR7 may have wondered in and left but suddenly now wolves are popping up everywhere. Could it be the reason they are listed as endangered in Ca. is due to the fact they are being planted here and Fish and Game who wants to protect their grand experiment?

      I know I’ll start some people howling here but I have no love of Wolves and our ecosystem has obviously functioned just fine without them. If you’re losing livestock I’d treat them like any other invasive species but keep my lips sealed. Those radio collars can be wrapped around the axle of any car with out of state plates. See ya!

      Let the howling begin!

      • Sir, you make quite an irresponsible comment inciting to killing and violence against an specie that is beneficial to the ecosystem. I encourage you to review,if you can, the science behind wolf contribution. By the way, wolves were not introduced in California, the use the corridor down from Idaho, Oregon to migrate and populate other areas.

      • Lions and Bears will take more live stock than these few wolves will

  • This article, giving exact sighting locations and times, is extremely irresponsible. Wolves are listed under both the federal and state Endangered Species list in California. If one of these wolves is poached, I hope whoever wrote this gets charged with abetting a federal crime. Plumas County News, you should remove this article immediately. I will be forwarding this to the CDFW so that they are aware of your irresponsibility here.

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