KREMMLING – The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Forensics Laboratory has confirmed that an animal killed near Kremmling on April 29 was indeed a gray wolf.
The animal was shot by a legal coyote hunter, who immediately notified Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW), which then notified the Service. The gray wolf is protected by both the federal government and the State of Colorado as an endangered species. The Service routinely investigates incidents affecting endangered species and will conduct this investigation with the assistance of CPW.
Colorado is part of the gray wolf’s native range, but wolves were eradicated from the state by the mid-1930s. Over the past decade, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has restored gray wolves into Wyoming, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico and Arizona, and some observers believe it is only a matter of time before wolves start migrating into Colorado from the north and south, according to Colorado Parks and Wildlife.
“On February 16, 2007 district wildlife managers with Colorado Parks and Wildlife were able to capture a brief video of a suspected wolf about 10 miles south of the Colorado-Wyoming border north of Walden,” Colorado Parks and Wildlife reported. “Biologists and wolf specialists who have examined the video say the animal seen on tape looks and behaves like a wolf.”