Written by Connor Gerbrandt
Wolves have been a popular topic of conversation in Blumenort after a pack of around fifteen was spotted in the area last week.
Blumenort resident Shelly Kliewer was taking an evening drive home from Steinbach along road 33E when several large black wolves surrounded her vehicle.
“The entire road was covered and there was no way of driving around them. I could see them in the ditch too. They had formed a line right across the gravel road.”
The wolves failed to move even after she honked her horn, so Kliewer decided to reverse back down the road.
“I slowly started backing up, keeping my eye on them and I saw three or four keep walking towards me. I was terrified.”
Eventually, Kliewer made it to a driveway and was able to turn around and take a different route home.
Kliewer has received mixed opinions since her encounter. Some fellow residents share her concern while others are disbelieving of her story. Still, she is convinced it was not deer or cows or coyotes that she saw, but wolves. “I just want the community to be careful,” Kliewer professes.
The day after the incident, two eaten deer carcasses were discovered nearby. A spokesperson for Manitoba Sustainable Development notes the wolves may have been protecting their food source, but admits it is unusual that they would approach a car.
Alternatively, the wolves may have been previously fed by someone in a vehicle and identified the car as a potential food source. Sustainable Development reminds that the feeding of wildlife on provincial roads and highways is illegal in Manitoba. Other wolf sightings have recently been reported east of Blumenort towards the Sandilands Provincial Forest.
If you do meet a wolf in person, you are advised to maintain eye contact with the animal, make noise, and slowly back away. Should the wolf attack, do not play dead, be relentless; you are fighting for your life.