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Gray wolf spotted near Grand Canyon killed by hunter

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Juska
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Gray wolf spotted near Grand Canyon killed by hunter

Postby Juska » Fri Feb 13, 2015 2:02 pm

http://www.iflscience.com/plants-and-an ... rmed-dead#

"It’s a match: genetic testing has unfortunately confirmed that the gray wolf shot in Utah on December 28 was indeed the same animal that recently appeared in the Grand Canyon for the first time in 70 years. The saddening announcement was made yesterday by the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service.

“The results were conclusive that it is the same wolf, identified by the Service as 914F,” the Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) said in a press release.

Conservationists and nature lovers rejoiced last fall when a solo gray wolf was spotted roaming the North Rim of the Grand Canyon. The animal was identified by the FWS as a female, 914F, which had been radio-collared at the start of the year in Wyoming, but during her epic 700 kilometer (450 mile) journey the device stopped working and endeavors to catch her and replace it were fruitless. The wolf, which was later nicknamed Echo, was subsequently photographed several times on Arizona’s Kaibab Plateau.

The wolf’s sighting was momentous because the once common species was virtually eliminated by humans in Arizona in the ‘30s and hadn’t been seen around the famous landmark since 1939. Many also believed that her presence signaled the early stages of recovery of the species.

But things turned sour in late December when a gray wolf was shot dead by a hunter near Beaver, southwestern Utah, after he reportedly mistook the animal for a coyote. Wildlife groups feared that the animal, which was a radio-collared female, was the lone ranger from the Grand Canyon, but DNA analysis was required to confirm this. After a nail-biting month, scientists at the University of Idaho revealed that she matched samples obtained from feces last year.

Although the man who shot her, a Utah state-authorized coyote bounty hunter, claims it was a case of mistaken identity and contacted the FWS as soon as he realized, not everyone is convinced. “Echo had a collar around her neck. But I guess all coyotes in Utah have collars, right?” environmentalist Robin Silver told Tucson’s Arizona Daily Star Newspaper. “The hunter knew exactly what he was doing.”
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Re: Gray wolf spotted near Grand Canyon killed by hunter

Postby Ash » Fri Feb 13, 2015 10:25 pm

If he reported it afterwards, I doubt there was any "foul-play" like people are suggesting. Otherwise he would have just left it dead or gotten rid of it. Instead, he was responsible, reported his mistake, and now everyone is convinced he did it on purpose. :roll: He wouldn't be in trouble if he "kept it to himself." As soon as he saw the collar on it, I'm sure he felt the weight of what he'd done.

And the stupid person commenting about shooting something with a radio collar? Do you know how THICK a wolf's fur gets? It wouldn't surprise me at all if the collar was completely hidden. And who knows how far away the hunter was.

Is it easy to mistake a coyote for a wolf? Not for me. But to most people, absolutely. Heck, think of all the people who think their pure DOGS are high content wolfdogs. :roll:

I think it's a very sad incident since the wolf was killed. And probably if the hunter worked for the department of wildlife, we should be questioning THEM instead. How knowledgeable are the people they hire? Isn't that the better question? He was doing his JOB, made a mistake that people like us would consider a stupid mistake, and now people are out to make him look like he's all anti-wolf.

In short, sad situation, but I place blame on nobody except for maybe the department that hired him. That says a lot about our DWR out here. Pretty much sums them up, actually. I've talked to quite a few people in the DWR while I've lived out here, and there are very few who actually know what they're doing.
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Re: Gray wolf spotted near Grand Canyon killed by hunter

Postby Nìmwey » Sat Feb 14, 2015 10:27 am

Ash wrote:Is it easy to mistake a coyote for a wolf? Not for me. But to most people, absolutely. Heck, think of all the people who think their pure DOGS are high content wolfdogs. :roll:

Yes, but it shouldn't be left to wolf experts and us nerds ( :icon-wink: ) to tell the difference between a wolf, coyote, and wolfy dog. If you're a hunter, you have a gun, you have the power over life and death, you should bloody well know what you're shooting.

So many dogs have lost their lives because the one with the gun thought they were wolves or coyotes.
My main interest is in parrots, dogs, toothed whales and snakes.
Future animals I want to have when we have land are camels, wolfdogs/wolves, coyotes or jackals, striped hyena or aardwolf. Also poultry, rabbits water buffalo and/or yak for livestock.
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Re: Gray wolf spotted near Grand Canyon killed by hunter

Postby Juska » Sat Feb 14, 2015 3:19 pm

^ this.

If you can't clearly see if the animal you're shooting at is your intended target, don't take the damned shot. End of story. Also, the photos posted are actual photos of the wolf. It's pretty clear that it's wearing a dark radio collar.

If it's the department's fault they licensed this guy to hunt "pest" animals, it's also his fault that he failed to do ONE JOB that he was given. He was a licensed coyote bounty hunter. You'd THINK he of all people would have the knowledge to tell a wolf from a coyote.

This isn't about some random Joe not being able to tell one from the other, it's about a trained, licensed hunter of one specific species shooting something he wasn't supposed to.

My thinking is, since he's a "pest" hunter, he probably sees wolves as pests as well (that "the only good wolf/coyote/fox/badger/whatever is a dead one" mentality), shot it and only reported it to save his own skin, because they'd probably know he was in the area at the time of death anyway and find him out, which would get him in more trouble than he already is (under investigation).
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Re: Gray wolf spotted near Grand Canyon killed by hunter

Postby Ash » Sat Feb 14, 2015 5:10 pm

Nah, people are looking too deep. He could have hidden the evidence no problem if he were worried about it. But because he was honest and reported it, people are out to bust him. It doesn't matter what he thinks about wolves. Even if he hated wolves and shot it simply because it was a wolf... why in the world then would he have reported it? It's not like he doesn't realize the gravity of the situation. So why in the world would some "wolf-hater" make himself known?

I do agree that if you don't know the animal, don't take the shot. But knowing the UT DWR, it's not surprising they hire people who don't know any better. So I stand by what I said before: ask why the department is hiring incompetent people. I've been asking it for several years.
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