By COUNTY 10
LANDER, Wyo. – Rancher Mike Hornecker said a wolf or wolves attacked one his Angus calves born in February as it was grazing next to the Shoshone Lake Road under the red bluff on Wednesday.
“I was riding, checking the herd, when I saw a cow acting strange. I went over to investigate and found the calf was still alive. I called the Game and Fish and they came out and verified it was a wolf kill,” Hornecker said.
County 10 reports Honecker usually runs 90 pair on the ranch, which is just off of the Baldwin Creek-Squaw Creek Loop about 10 miles west of Lander.
“We’ve had cattle up here going back 100 years and this is the first wolf kill we’ve been able to verify,” he said. “It was a fresh attack and I when I began riding up I think that spooked the wolves off of it.”
Unfortunately for Hornecker, the attack happened in an area designated as a “predator area” by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Hornecker said, and therefore there is no compensation for the lost animal.
“I’ve been in a hurry up and wait mode for them,” Hornecker said.
The rancher said a bill introduced and passed last year by District 33 State Rep. Jim Allen in the Wyoming Legislature that would provide for state reimbursement does not go into effect until July 1.
“I guess I’ll have to have family members when they are freed-up to come up here and monitor the herd,” Hornecker said.
A WGFD spokesperson was not immediately available to comment.