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DNR probing wolf shooting


ELKHORN — The shooting of a wolf in Walworth County has spurred a “law enforcement” investigation by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

“A deer hunter shot what we believe is a wolf and delivered the carcass to us Monday,” said Jenny Niemeyer, the conservation warden supervisor for Walworth, Racine and Kenosha counties. “The examination of the animal is not complete, but I can say that it appears to be a wolf, it has wolf-like characteristics, it is a male and weighs about 60 pounds.”

Niemeyer said conservation wardens are conducting the investigation.

Although Niemeyer could not identify where the wolf was killed, she said it was in a zone where wolves are in season.

“I’m not in the office to check reports, and I’m not certain as to which township this occurred,” she said. “There are two requirements to hunt wolves. First, you must be in a zone where it is legal, and a hunter must have the proper license.”

Niemeyer declined to comment when asked if the investigation focused on whether the hunter was properly licensed.

DNR wolf expert Adrian Wydeven told reporters the wolf was a male yearling or adult, not a registered harvested wolf.

“There are no known packs in the area, so it probably dispersed from farther north in Wisconsin or Michigan,” Wydeven said. “Lone dispersing wolves from northern Wisconsin have been detected in the past as far south as Missouri, Illinois and Indiana, so these unusual movements do sometimes occur.

“With any illegal wildlife killing investigation, conservation wardens will investigate the scene, talk to any witnesses, talk to anyone who knows anything about the animals that had died and try to find out more by looking over the area,” Wydeven told the Superior Telegram.