Wolves

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by wwb, Jan 28, 2005.

  1. wwb

    wwb Super Member

    918
    0
    0
    Finally finished the roll of film and got the pictures developed. Here's a picture of a wolf track in the mud of a logging trail - the track isn't more than 15 minutes old.

    About 9:00 in the morning of the second day of the Minnesota deer season, the whole pack started howling, and they weren't any more than 400 yards away from me, between me and my son. We could follow them by ear as they traveled, howling all the way. A few minutes later, I met my son heading toward me (as I was heading toward him). A few minutes of scouting, and we found where they crossed the trail.

    http://www.hunt101.com/showphoto.php?photo=243672

    Just realized the link was screwed up.... this should work.
     
  2. Clayslayer

    Clayslayer Well-Known Member

    105
    0
    0
    That's kind of spooky. Wolves are no joke.
     

  3. uglydog

    uglydog Super Member

    1,427
    0
    0
    Wolves are neat critters but can play havoc on dogs when they want to. Some friends of friends lost a hound to a wolf shortly after New Years while chasing coyotes in Aitken Co, I think, and we put another wolf to flight last weekend doing the same thing in Carlton Co. We were able to catch the dogs before the wolf tired of running or found some of its friends so no injuries or deaths this time. I just heard that a wolf was shot by a coyote hunter down in southern Minnesota in the past couple of weeks, I think it was in Faribault Co. I knew a female was tracked south to the northern suburbs of the Cities where it headed east and was lost around Madison, Wisconsin. A friend has pictures of a wolf by Milaca, MN and we have had them respond to our coyote locating siren around Quamba and in the Chengwatana Forest. I don't worry much when out with bird dogs as they are not often much more than 100 yards out and I haven't heard a reliable report of one being killed while out hunting. Hounds range much further and are actually hunting wild canines in many cases so their odds of running a foul of wolves are much greater. We generally believe wolves outrun the hounds and the dogs that are lost are to wolves that decided not to run anymore and stood their ground to prove a point. My guess is these are up and coming alpha dogs that were driven out of the pack as they seem to generally be alone and have a chip on their shoulder. I would think more hounds would be lost if a pack were bayed.
     
  4. Drop-Shot

    Drop-Shot Super Member

    3,764
    1
    38
    Uglydog I was in Montana when they started releasing wolves into the wild,the game folks said if a wolf attacks an animal owned by some one like a calf,the department would pay to replace that calf,but no other cows would feed the new calves and they died anyway unless you hand feed them.It was a mess,they ran out of money to replace calves and goats and sheep.The hunters were in a bad situation,if you shoot an animal and start taking parts out the wolves would feed on them and challange you for your animal.Hunters hated them but if you ever kill one you have to prove your life or some one elses life was in jepordy,how can you prove that?We were told you went to jail.lost your truck,gun,and hunting rights for 5 years.I saw them all the time and I hate them,they attack young elk and deer not just the sick and old like the bioligist said.When I go back it will be the same old thang,wolves belong,they died out like the dinosouars did,if we want to use logic,we need to bring back the dinasouars too.You can tell I don't like wolves.If you make a kill you have to have ropes and pulleys to hoist animal parts off the ground out of the reach of wolves.It's only a matter of time when a hunter gets attacked,and if it is me or some one I know,I will file the biggest lawsuit against the game bioligists envolved.Thats my view.Drop-Shot
     
  5. grimel

    grimel Guest

    185
    0
    0
    They tried re-introducing the Red Wolf in East TN. Didn't work out. The biologists said there wasn't enough food. Considering we have coyotes eating pet dogs, rabbits, deer, grouse, etc, etc I can't see it. We have deer the size of big German Shepards because we have so many. Can't see lack of food as the problem. Not to mention the sheep, cattle, chickens, turkey, geese, etc the farmers raise.

    We have a lot of dumb ol' redneck hicks around here. A wolf eating livestock isn't anything a 30-06, a shovel, and 20 minutes won't fix. Claiming someone's deer would be just as easily solved.

    It took a few years to solve the feral dog problem. The wolves never became a problem.
     
  6. Drop-Shot

    Drop-Shot Super Member

    3,764
    1
    38
    Grimel I watched 2 wolves move in on a calf.I was following tracks going down hill towards my hunting buddy,I came on them down a bluff I used my binoculars to find out I had been chasing 2 cows and 2 young elk.2 Wolves cut the younger calves out away from the cowsI thought I was going to watch a kill,but 1 of the calves yelled and a cow elk ran over in a split second and kicked the male wolf almost as high as a connifer,the female stepped away,but them rascals tried again.I ate my lunch and watched the whole thing.So lets see,wolves eat young deer and young elk,their exsistance is counter productive to our sport.If I saw a man shoot a wolf for the things I saw,I would just turn my head and let it happen,never saw a thing,I hate wolves.Drop-Shot
     
  7. wwb

    wwb Super Member

    918
    0
    0
    I grew up in Northern Minnesota - the one place in the lower 48 where the wolves were never exterminated. When I was a kid, there was a bounty on them.

    The wolves and the deer there have always been in a balance of sorts; if the deer population is down, the wolves have smaller litters, or no pups at all. If the deer numbers are up, they have bigger litters.

    They take a few fawns in the spring, but it's a pretty insignificant number in the overall picture. Their primary food for most of the year is roadkill, squirrels, rabbits, and mice. In the winter, when the deer yard up, they will take the weakest ones; the healthy deer can almost always get away - I've had the good fortune to watch it on a couple occasions.

    The wolves will also watch for Ravens and Grey Jays, since they will locate the carcass of any dead animal. Then the wolves will move in and clean it up. They are good hunters when they have to be, but they will take the easy way out every time if they have the chance.
     
  8. Drop-Shot

    Drop-Shot Super Member

    3,764
    1
    38
    wwb do they always run when seeing you or do they just walk away?I can remmember red wolves and they would smell humans and you hardly ever saw them.Hawks did not used to be carrioun(eat dead animals)We used to eat hawks and all they ever ate was live rabbits or field mice,any thing alive,and crows did not used to be carrioun,eagles are carrioun now,I almost run one into my windshield from a dead deer on interstate 90,animals are changing,deer used to never fight humans and now every year several attacks happen,I wittnessed one.Black bears never used to attack,as a kid I had one cornered with a stick and she never thought of fighting back.Animals are changing before our eyes,wolves used to kill weak and old animals but farmers loose calves by the hundreds in the yellowstone valley.The government used to pay for the farm animals that were taken by wolves and cougers,but the program is going broke and farmers loose live stock every day in that valley.People attacks are up by wolves,things are changing and animals are acting different.I'm told it's for a purpose but I can't prove that.Drop-Shot
     
  9. wwb

    wwb Super Member

    918
    0
    0
    Drop-Shot -

    If the wolves know you're there, you'll never see them. Spend enough time in the woods, and sooner or later you get lucky.

    Once, a pack was coming through the woods, going cross-wind, but downwind from me, about 70 yards away in pretty open country (pretty open country where we hunt means you can see 100 yards in some spots). As soon as they got straight downwind, they instantly stopped, made a quick 180, and went back the way they had just come at a dead run. They never saw me, I'm sure... but as soon as they caught my scent, they were outta there.

    I don't have any experience with wolves and livestock... there aren't any farms anywhere near the area we hunt.
     
  10. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    wwb I won't shoot them cause I abide by laws even though I think they are wrong.The Montana wolf re-inducement is still in court,the land owners had no say about their property and they filed a lawsuit,it was thrown out 3 times and 1 more throw out and it goes to the supreme court,where Montanans know they will win,but win what?The public that don't own more than a lot they live on don't know what ranchers have to put up with,I'm sure no one will win really.Drop-Shot
     
  11. Drop-Shot

    Drop-Shot Super Member

    3,764
    1
    38
    That was me.Drop-Shot,I signed in but the remmember me box I most likely didn't punch.Drop-Shot
     
  12. 8pointduck

    8pointduck Super Member

    1,137
    0
    0
    I can't speak abuot wolves, but can about coyotes. They too used to be afraid of humans. Well, last year there were report after report of attacks on people and pets. I say do away with them all! Wolves would just as soon have you for lunch as they would an elk................and for the record I will kill evry coyote I have the chance to kill.
     
  13. grimel

    grimel Guest

    185
    0
    0
    Re: re: Wolves

    Buy a good elect caller with either remote control or 25-50ft speaker wire.

    Set the speaker in a small bush. If you have a squirrel or rabbit hide to set at the edge of the bush it's a bonus. Cammo yourself head to toe. Put a cammo sleeve over your gun. Fire up the caller. Call a couple of minutes. Wait a couple. Repeat.

    Some folks (depening on the area) are using accurized versions of the AR-15's with 16-20in barrels and cammo paint jobs. Doubles are apparently becoming more common.

    I'm getting ready for a Saturday spent with me, a shotgun, and a cal on the mountain.
     
  14. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    The reparation program is used in MN also, there was some rough times but the complaints seem to be less now. I feel the complaints are more in regards to the Endangered Species Act requirements which prevent one from legally protecting their property from predation. Moving the wolf to threatened status is a big step forward and when a control plan is finally ratified, I think many complaints will disappear. It is uncommon to see wolves in the wild, as mentioned earlier they are quite spooky and wary of people so one would have to be constantly armed and ready to shoot to get even a fleeting chance at one.
    As for losing a game animal to wolves, it sucks but that is life in the wild. Any food left unprotected by another predator is fair game to anything else that comes along. This is no different if a bear, cougar, or unethical jerk finds it rather than wolves. I have a cabin in wolf country where I deer and bear hunt, and my shirt-tail relatives live in prime wolf country where we have not lost anything to wolves nor have I with caribou in Alaska. Deer are not much of a problem, they can be hauled out in one trip most of the time. Moose and bear are much bigger and caribou often are quartered depending on distance to camp but a combination of smelly clothes, tarps, and a can of dog repellant have kept the wolves away, wish it would work for bears. I am skeptical about stories of wolves "protecting" found game, I have never had this happen to me nor has anyone I directly know. Once I heard a bark from the woods but I thought of it more as a warning to other wolves than as a threat to me. Wolves seem to be pretty wary of "free" food and often take a few days observation to feed at a site with human scent, if they ever do. That is one of the many difficulties of trapping them and especially those who have taken to stock raiding. I am also not aware of any attacks by wolves on people in the Yellowstone area or anywhere else in North America for that matter. Can you direct me to a source? I would be most appreciative as I could ask after it to acquaintances who actually study wild canines including wolves.
    It is a common fact that wolves take any animal that puts itself at enough of a disadvantage, not just the young, sick, or old. The most commonly taken deer around here by wolves (and hunters) is 1.5-2.5 years of age, their first year away from mom, and they along with those with the afore mentioned afflictions are most often at a disadvantage compared to mature, healthy animals. Livestock is at a severe disadvantage, they are often penned up and they have been bred to be docile at all times which is counter to protecting themselves. I don't mind wolves, they keep the deer wary enough to scare off those who don't want to work for their deer and add an element of atavistic danger to the woods, no matter how much one believes there is little to fear.
    As for animals changing, I don't think its that much. Deer "attacks" may be more common but then deer numbers are at the highest they may ever have been as is the human population and its invasion into the deer habitats. More contacts would naturally lead to more conflict. I also think this is a reason for more black bear/human conflicts, more bears and more people in bear territory. Add in that the typical actions of people increase the odds of conflict and it is amazing fewer people are injured by bears. As for birds of prey being scavengers, that has always been the case. Many old falconry books tell of making use of this trait to catch mature hawks for hunting. The earliest writings in this country that I'm familliar with dates back to the mid 1700's. Ben Franklin spoke out so strongly about the scavenging habits of the bald eagle that it became our national symbol by one vote over the turkey.
     
  15. Drop-Shot

    Drop-Shot Super Member

    3,764
    1
    38
    Guest just because it never happened to you does not mean it doesn't happen.When I shot in the air the wolves moved off the kill but kept circleing me and my animal,yapping all the time calling all wolves I guess,They did not get really aggressive but was irritated I took there supper.I reported it to the Montana Game and Fish.Look them up and ask for wolf complaints and your printer will burn up from use.In the Lewiston area they have attacked several house pets,that too will be on the reports.When I was a kid we had red wolves and when hunting over bait for coyotes the wolf finished killing a injured coyote I shot and he moved when I pulled the trigger.I watched as the red wolf pull the coyote in the woods and out of sight I heard him eating the coyote,even in the hills of Mississippi the wolves would take an easy meal.I have never shot a wolf and would not hunt with some one that did,but they are getting out of hand in the yellowstone valley.That was a prime entry area.I am serious,get in touch with Montana Game and Fish and ask for wolf complaints and get ready for a response.Drop-Shot
     
  16. 8pointduck

    8pointduck Super Member

    1,137
    0
    0
    I tell you one thing, let me be in any danger around a wolf, coyote, bear or anything..............He will die and I will make sure of it. I never go into the woods without a firearm and I never will.The danger factor is too high and my life is way more important to me than any animal. .....endangered or not.
     
  17. Drop-Shot

    Drop-Shot Super Member

    3,764
    1
    38
    Thats what its going to come down to 8point,animals are acting different than they used to.In Montana you have to go through all kinds of hell if you shoot a wolf.Even the ranchers have to have a life in danger to shoot one,thats why it will go to the supreme court.They introduced the wolves with out asking the ranchers that own most of the land they walk on,wheather or not they could.The ranchers would have said no.It has been in the courts for years now and gets stone walled by extremists.Wolves were non-exisistive in the yellowstone valley,and gone out on their own,The re-introduction was hush-hush and now it's in the courts.Who knows if it gets overturned or not.Till then I carry also and at the first sight of aggression I will protect myself and any one thats with me.The point is they died out on their own like the dinasaurs did.I say let nature take care of itself.Drop-Shot
     
  18. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    The long Guest post above is mine, for some reason I got logged out after replying to another post and didn't notice.
    Dropshot, sorry to have not been clear, I just meant I personally have not experienced this nor has anyone I personally know. I did not mean to imply it does not happen. I guess our definition of aggression or protecting is different, I think of an animal "protecting" its food as one who makes a concerted attempt to drive off an intruder. A classic case would be the stereotypical grizzly attack. I look at your example as a lesser animal giving way to a more dominate one. It is no less hair raising but not what I would deem dangerous in and of itself. It is kind of like a domesticated dog barking at you, you keep an eye on it so it doesn't nip your ankle but don't really expect an all out attack.
    I also note that you mention the red wolf of the southern U.S. which I have only a limited exposure to in a captive environment. The reds appear to be much more tolerant of humans compared to the grey or timber wolves. When the wildlife center in Forest Lake, MN recieved theirs, I heard that the reds adjusted to the staff in a couple of weeks even though the wolves were all captured out of the wild. The greys took much longer and it was easier to have setbacks with them. I have seen coyotes and hawks do similar things to your wolf example so would not think your experience implausible.
    As for wolf attacks on humans, the only ones I found occurred in Europe and Asia. I also did not find any on the Montana Game and Fish site nor in a search of the Missoula, Helena, or Billings papers. I did find some complaints of attacks on pets which appears to fall within the "self defense" portion of the wolf plan as stated by the MT F&G so again it may be a difference of terminology. I've e-mailed a buddy who is a contract trapper for the USFWS out there who deals with stock killer problems and has done wolf control here in Minnesota. I have gained the most info from him regarding wild canines but have also had the chance to talk to Dave Mech and various graduate students studying wolves.
    I also have to disagree that wolves became extinct in the Yellowstone Valley. Wolves were extirpated from that area due to the direct efforts of modern man, not natural changes which affected the dinosaurs. Wolves were found throughout North America and it was a major reason coyotes had a much smaller range than today. I also have to agree with the close scrutiny of "self defense" shootings, especially as it includes protecting property. Having seen this excuse used and accepted on many questionable black bear shootings makes me very distrustful of the claim without thorough follow up.
    I also value my life and that of other humans higher than of animals but my standard of what constitutes self defense is likely colored by my training and experience as a peace officer. Listening and reading the thoughts of private citizens leads me to that conclusion. Mine standard is not the right way for all, just the one I can live with and justify if necessary. Each person has to set their own threshold and live with the consequences.
     
  19. Anonymous

    Anonymous Guest

    I got kicked out again, The last guest post and the other long one is mine, uglydog
     
  20. jkvirginia

    jkvirginia Guest

    38
    0
    0
    It sounds to me as if we have two very different situations.

    Drop-shot, your stories are from a wolf-reintroduction area. I suspect the wolves there are more confrontational, aggressive, and otherwise troublemaking because they've figured out that they can get away with it--They're smarter than the average dog, and your dog will surely learn to run your house if you let him get away with it, and these critters have figured out there's no consequences to eating stock, eating pets, challenging hunters for their kills, what have you.

    wwb's experience, OTOH, seems to be with a long-term native population, where evolution ensured that only the most cautious, human-fearing wolves survived to breed, the rest getting trapped or shot.

    I think the overall problem is the learned lack of man-fear among many predatory game animals--As I said, they're opportunists, and they will take advantage of whatever they feel they can safely get away with. Coyotes and Mtn. Lions are much the same. Though I suspect that if the black bear one poster menaced with a stick had been a mama with cubs, he wouldn't be typing today...