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WA: After Malaga sighting, biologist says Naneum wolf pack may be encroaching on populous areas

Shawn Goggins

WENATCHEE – No stranger to wolves, Dusty Broderson, a longtime hunter who hails from Wenatchee, he’s 100% positive that the animal he was tracking with his long lens scope in Malaga recently was a wolf. “It was absolutely a wolf, no doubt about it,” Dusty told iFIBER ONE News via telephone on Monday. An employee of Alcoa Wenatchee Works, Dusty says cameras at the plant have been capturing what colleagues suspect is a wolf. But last Tuesday, Dusty says he tracked the wild canine for about 20 minutes from 2,000 yards away. Dusty says the animal had settled down on the ridge in Malaga above the Alcoa plant. At one point, Dusty said the animal lifted its head and howled.

“I’ve hunted my whole life, I’ve seen wolves while hunting in the Colville area,” said Broderson. “This was definitely a wolf.”

Dusty says he aligned his phone camera lens with his tracking scope to get a viewable snapshot of the wolf.

iFIBER ONE News submitted Dusty’s photo to the Department of Fish and Wildlife in Wenatchee where it was reviewed by WDFW Biologist Gregg Kurz. 

Kurz says the photo is too grainy to confirm if the animal is indeed a wolf, but he says the critter has all the characteristics of a wolf. Kurz says if it is a wolf, it’s likely part of the Naneum pack was confirmed to be present in the Clockum area above Wenatchee in 2018. WDFW says the Naneum pack likely consists of only two wolves, one male and one female. Kurz says it’s possible that the Naneum pack has traversed further east since initial sightings last year. If it’s a wolf, Kurz says he’s concerned about the wolves traveling into more populous areas, but the likelihood of an attack is nominal.