We have a #cheer today for the news that Washington state has a new wolf pack, the 19th since the animals began returning to the state in the 1990s.

State wildlife managers say part of a northcentral Washington wolf pack has split away and formed a new group called the Sherman Pack. So far, the state’s Fish and Wildlife Dept. has only confirmed the two adults in the pack, though biologists suspect they have pups, wolf specialist Scott Becker said. Two wolves traveling together qualify as a pack.

FWD  has not yet determined whether the packs have overlapping territory. The Sherman pack has been staying south of Highway 20, while the Profanity Pack has been roaming north of the highway, Becker said.

The Spokesman-Review reports that at the end of 2015, the state was home to at least 90 wolves and eight breeding pairs.

Wolves were shot, poisoned and trapped nearly to extinction in the state in the 1920s and 1930s but then began returning in the state from nearby states and Canada in the 1990s.

We hope that this new wolf pack doesn’t fall victim to the ridiculous law currently in place in Washington that dictates if a wolf makes four kills on land owned by ranchers, the FWD can consider taking lethal action against the wolf.