The Wolf Intelligencer


South Dakota


Gray Wolf (Canis lupus)
Great Plains Wolf (Canis lupus nubilus)
Eastern Timber Wolf (Canis lycaon, Canis lupus lycaon)

Population Statistics [No known established packs.]

Legal Status;

US Fish and Wildlife Service (Gray Wolves in the Western Great Lakes)
South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks


South Dakota News Resources & Publications
Rapid City Journal (Rapid City, South Dakota)
South Dakota Magazine (Yankton, South, Dakota)
Black Hills Pioneer (Spearfish, South Dakota)


Wolf and Wildlife News from South Dakota

Journal Articles

Sentinel coyote pathogen survey to assess declining black-footed ferret (Mustela nigripes) population in South Dakota, USA. Schuler K, Claymore M, Schnitzler H, Dubovi E, Rocke T, Perry MJ, Bowman D, Abbott RC. The Journal of Wildlife Diseases. 2021 Apr


As part of the national recovery effort, endangered black-footed ferrets (Mustela nigripes) were reintroduced to the Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation in South Dakota, US in 2000. Despite an encouraging start, numbers of ferrets at the site have declined. In an effort to determine possible causes of the population decline, we undertook a pathogen survey in 2012 to detect exposure to West Nile virus (WNV), canine distemper virus (CDV), plague (Yersinia pestis), tularemia (Francisella tularensis), and heartworm (Dirofilaria immitis) using coyotes (Canis latrans) as a sentinel animal. The highest seroprevalence was for WNV with 71% (20/28) of coyotes testing antibody-positive. Seroprevalence of CDV and plague were lower, 27% and 13%, respectively. No evidence of active infection with tularemia or heartworm was seen in the coyotes sampled. As this study did not sample black-footed ferrets themselves, the definitive cause for the decline of this population cannot be determined. However, the presence of coyotes seropositive for two diseases, plague and CDV, lethal to black-footed ferrets, indicated the potential for exposure and infection. The high seroprevalence of WNV in the coyotes indicated a wide exposure to the virus; therefore, exposure of black-footed ferrets to the virus is also likely. Due to the ability of WNV to cause fatal disease in other species, studies may be useful to elucidate the impact that WNV could have on the success of reintroduced black-footed ferrets as well as factors influencing the spread and incidence of the disease in a prairie ecosystem.

Population dynamics of a Bighorn Sheep (Ovis canadensis) herd in the southern Black Hills of South Dakota and Wyoming. Parr BL, Smith JB, Jenks JA, Thompson DJ. The American Midland Naturalist. 2018 Jan

Long-distance dispersal of a subadult male cougar from South Dakota to Connecticut documented with DNA evidence. Hawley JE, Rego PW, Wydeven AP, Schwartz MK, Viner TC, Kays R, Pilgrim KL, Jenks JA. Journal of Mammalogy. 2016 May

Where can wolves live and how can we live with them?. Mech LD. Biological Conservation. 2017 Jun

Survival of white‐tailed deer neonates in Minnesota and South Dakota. Grovenburg TW, Swanson CC, Jacques CN, Klaver RW, Brinkman TJ, Burris BM, Deperno CS, Jenks JA. The Journal of Wildlife Management. 2011 Jan

Evaluation of an augmentation of Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep at Badlands National Park, South Dakota. Zimmerman, T.J., 2008.

Effects of culling on Bison demographics in Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota. Millspaugh JJ, Gitzen RA, Licht DS, Amelon S, Bonnot TW, Jachowski DS, Jones-Farrand DT, Keller BJ, McGowan CP, Pruett MS, Rittenhouse CD.Natural Areas Journal. 2008 Jul

Effect of coyotes and release site selection on survival and movement of translocated swift foxes in the Badlands ecosystem of South Dakota. Schroeder, G.M., 2007.

Survival of pronghorns in western South Dakota. Jacques CN, Jenks JA, Sievers JD, Roddy DE, Lindzey FG.The Journal of wildlife management. 2007 May

Factors influencing a declining pronghorn population in Wind Cave National Park, South Dakota (Doctoral dissertation, South Dakota State University).Sievers, J.D., 2004.

Failure to identify alveolar echinococcosis in trappers from South Dakota in spite of high prevalence of Echinococcus multilocularis in wild canids. Hildreth MB, Sriram S, Gottstein B, Wilson M, Schantz PM. Journal of Parasitology. 2000 Feb

Differential effects of coyotes and red foxes on duck nest success. Sovada MA, Sargeant AB, Grier JW. The Journal of Wildlife Management. 1995 Jan

Gray wolf (Canis lupus) occurrences in the Dakotas. Light DS, Fritts SH. American Midland Naturalist. 1994 Jul

Observed interactions between coyotes and red foxes. Sargeant AB, Allen SH. Journal of Mammalogy. 1989 Aug

Coyote foods in the Black hills, South Dakota. MacCracken JG, Uresh DW. The Journal of wildlife management. 1984

An ecological study of the mammals of the Badlands and the Black Hills of South Dakota and Wyoming. Stebler AM. Ecology. 1939 Jul


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