The Wyoming Game and Fish Department on Tuesday announced plans to capture wolves in the northwestern part of the state in order to assessment the outcomes of the current management strategy.

The capture operations will begin this month and continue throughout 2018, the department says.

Large Carnivore Section Supervisor Dan Thompson says helicopter net-gunning will be the primary method used to capture wolves. However, trapping will be used in some circumstances.

"Upon capture, biologists will fit individual wolves with radio collars and collect biological samples," Thompson said in a statement.

Areas where wolves will be trapped will have major access points marked with warning signs. Area closures will be in effect in the immediate vicinity of the trap sites. The public is asked to observe all warning signs.

Data collected through the capture program will be used to assess the status and health of wolves in the ecosystem. The department says such data provide insight into population dynamics, which is crucial in demonstrating the successful management of a recovered wolf population.

The department says annual monitoring is vital to the ongoing management of wolves in Wyoming.

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