Wisconsin’s gray wolf population is estimated at over 800 - high enough that the state Department of Natural Resources allows a certain number of wolves to be hunted each year.
But in the 1970s the wolf population was a fraction of that number, leading to their protection under federal and state legislation. Jennifer Steinglein studies wolf population dynamics at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She says the recent population growth didn’t happen all at once. Its strongest increase came within the last two decades.