Wolves Reported on Michigan's Northern Lower Peninsula

A group of up to three wolves may be living on the Lower Peninsula

For many years there have been lone wolves reported on the Lower Peninsula but this is the first confirmation of more than one. The wolves may have crossed the frozen lake near Mackinac Bridge to get there from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan where wolves are well established.

DNRE, USDA Confirm Wolf Tracks in Cheboygan County
Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Environment






  1. ProWolf in WY Avatar
    ProWolf in WY

    It seemed like it would only be a matter of time. Now the question is, are there many livestock owners around and what are people’s attitudes in general? It seems like the Great Lakes region is a lot more tolerant and informed of wolves.

  2. JB Avatar

    I grew up about ~15 miles from Manistee National Forest; I used to run there often in HS and college with the cross country and track teams.

    Northern Michigan is excellent wolf habitat with Manistee and Huron National Forests, numerous large state forests, and a robust white tail population (though not as robust as the agricultural areas a bit further south).

    On related news, a had a student show me a cell phone photo from this same area that clearly showed three cougars (a female and that years cubs, I assume). My understanding is that MDNR still denies the existence of cougars in the state.

  3. Alan Gregory Avatar

    I remember thinking about this while I was on temporary Air Force duty at the Air National Guard base at Alpena, Mich. (northern lower peninsula) in August 1988. And boy was it hot there at the time – 104 one day that week and the warmest spot in the lower 48 I recall. A shame gray wolves were never returned to the six-million-acre Adirondack Park (where I lived in the late 80s). The habitat is there along with the prey (white-tailed deer).

  4. ProWolf in WY Avatar
    ProWolf in WY

    JB, there has been so much evidence of mountain lions all over the Midwest but people deny they are there. I don’t know Michigan’s law but in Iowa mountain lions are shot on sight as well as black bears.

  5. Anna Avatar

    Personally, I really would hate everyone in the DNR if they relocated those wolves because they probably worked hard enough to get up the guts and get down here to find a territory. And they don’t hurt humans, either…


Ken Cole is a 5th generation Idahoan, an avid fly fisherman, wildlife enthusiast, and photographer. He is the interim Idaho Director for Western Watersheds Project.

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Ken Cole