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Thread: Wolf in the hood.

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    Member cod's Avatar
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    Default Wolf in the hood.

    This story has not turned out like I had hoped, but some may find interesting none the less. I live in a semi rural area on the K Pen with perhaps 10-15 homes within a half mile radius of my home. There are pockets of homes here and there and many unoccupied lots ranging to ten acres or more. Important to note that there is Big country just a mile away and apparently a wolf snuck into our hoods midst and killed a moose calf on one of these vacant ten acre parcels. This parcel is bordered by roads on two sides completely and has another road touching a third corner of it. Homes occupy 3 sides of this parcel.
    It happens I run my pooch at least daily down one side of this parcel as it is a part of our 'loop' run. For a couple weeks in early Jan my dog had been taking unusual detours from her normal spots and was obviously (in hindsight ) trying to tell me about the intruder. I finally investigated her behavior about Tues Jan 19 and discovered unbelievable wolf trails and sign w/o intruding very far into his sanctuary. By the sign I assumed up to five wolves.
    The following eve I set up a stand and did some calling till just after dark with no luck. The following morn I took two trail cams, my dog and 22 pistol to further explore. I discovered a calf kill just 60 yards in front of where I had set up the nite before located in a small but thick spruce grove. It was down to chewed and broken bones. After setting the two cams I made a circle thru his sanctuary. As I nearly completed the circle there was a wolf. Standing confused about 70 yards from me, I raised my pistol and wondered whether to shoot or not. (22, distance, pressure on animal) all a concern. Regardless, I got off 3 quik lousy shots as it left the area. I snuck along a bit more and sighted the wolf 3 more times and backed out.
    I was flabbergasted at the amount of trails within this 10 acre lot. A perimeter check showed this (what turns out to be just one wolf) had been walking to the edge of the parcel and looking into the back lot lines of homeowners with dogs (or not). Yet the wolf Never left the parcel (parcel defined entirely by two wire fenceline).
    My previous years of experience at this parcel had always showed use by coyotes and a fair hare supply in the few thick young groves of spruce there. I could find zero hare tracks or for that matter, Any other tracks cept'in a couple ermine tracks.
    I notified a few of the neighbors with dogs of my find. I contemplated trapping/snaring as clearly this was strictly a wolf lair. But still did not want to risk it.
    Long story shorter, after studying this situations do seeing it 3 more times a few days later, I decided I needed to employ help to get this wolf. So a week ago yest, I set 2 neighbor friends up on two separate stands where I had determined I could funnel the wolf to. The plan worked well as guy1 saw the wolf down the clearing I had pointed out, but no shot taken. Then the wolf funneled to guy 2 who got a shot w his 22-250 at 30 ft. MISS! Gun jams. He said all he could see in his scope was fur.
    Despite our PREhunt plan, which I thought I made clear that we don't want to pressure this wolf so as to chase him from his 'sanctuary', guy 1 left his post after the shot and told the shooter he would go track him. I bumped into guy 1 just half way thru my drive. He had abandoned his 'tracking'. Later, I tracked the wolf to the sanctuary boundary that was the only escape route not thru a neighborhood. The tracks showed wolf panic and at least 3 confused attempts/thoughts by the wolf to go beyond the two strand fence boundary marker. (I could actually see where it's forearms were stretched out on the grd partiaily past the wire while crouching there). But not exiting its sanctuary boundary. Finally, when it for the 3rd time found itself in the very corner of the parcel it made its escape.
    The 3 of us hunters left the area and I hoped another few days rest the wolf would again return to his former sanctuary. Unfortunately to me, I found that guy 1 had returned to the escape area just two hrs after our hunt, to further track the wolf in the thicker spruce grove the wolf had fled to.
    This past week my investigating is telling me the wolf has fled. No returning tracks by wolf found. In fact, I think I found fresh yote tracks within the sanctuary two days ago. I could be wrong as the snow/tracking conditions are very poor. Am waiting for new snow to verify my guess.
    Its been a fun/intriguing experience but I think it's a done deal. I know for some this has been too long winded, for which I appologize, but I welcome comments and hope others explore their local neighborhood to find wondrous new knowledge just never expected.
    While we have had wolves nearby the area about every other winter, I would never have believed this wolfs' actions.
    Why would a wolf choose to live in a neighborhood?
    Thoughts? Comments? Questions?
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    I killed a wolf with a .22 pistol years ago. I would never have attempted it, but a guy with me shot at it with his .22 hitting it in the leg and breaking said leg. I shot it in the head. Several times. It finally went down. When I cleaned the skull, not a single bullet had penetrated the skull. But it went down and died. Oh, and he was a big one. Adult male.
    Hunt Ethically. Respect the Environment.

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    Member akiceman25's Avatar
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    Great story!

    He'll probably be back. He felt safe and had food. What more would he want?

    May consider talking to neighbors and coming up with a plan to snare it. Set a zillion of them. (Assuming it's a safe area to do so)
    I am serious... and don't call me Shirley.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KM2K7sV-K74

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    I enjoy reading accounts such as this, they are very educational.

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    Moderator kingfisherktn's Avatar
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    Comment: maybe take a couple of new partners. Lol

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    Cool story. Hard to say if it will be back or not.

    I'd throw a trail cam up for a few days and see what turns up- animals sometimes do funny things we don't expect. Loner wolves are kind of weird ones at best.
    "I do not deal in hypotheticals. The world, as it is, is vexing enough..." Col. Stonehill, True Grit

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    Member ChugiakTinkerer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hodgeman View Post
    Cool story. Hard to say if it will be back or not.

    I'd throw a trail cam up for a few days and see what turns up- animals sometimes do funny things we don't expect. Loner wolves are kind of weird ones at best.
    My first thought on the described behavior was that it may be looking for socialization as much as food. Kind of like the wolf at Mendenhall Glacier a few years ago.

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    Member cod's Avatar
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    Addressing a few of the comments.....
    I was quite reluctant to take the shot w the 22. Not just because of inferior weapon but really didn't want to pressure the animal who obviously thought he was in his own little paradise. ( the 3 diff wolves I've shot at all seemed 'confused' at the shot, rather than scared). Had I brought my rifle I think I would of had him but since I had not had a visual on him up to that point I only brought the pistol for possible self defense while setting cams.

    Even with my limited experience of trapping/snaring I have them both for wolf and am sure I could have gotten it that way, had I tried AND had he not left the area. There were numerous Excellent places to both snare and trap within his sanctuary. My decision to NOT trap/snare was determined by 2 factors. One, I would have never lived it down had I caught a neighborhood dog. ( Even tho I was positive NO dog had been inside the sanctuary.) Two, I had learned on day two in the sanctuary that wolf had eaten all game within. He had to be HUNGRY cuz he was cracking leg bones open and eating the rib bones. I feared he would soon leave due to sheer hunger. Although there are moose and calves strolling thru his area on occasion. If wolf got one, I guess he could get another if hunger drove it. That would be quite a sight to see one wolf take down a moose. Calf or not.

    I think I'll not touch the 'partner' comment....

    I still have 2 trail cams in the sanctuary. A new snow will for sure tell me whether he's back or not. From the beginning I had surmised the wolf had come in the sanctuary from the side he went out. There is a small corridor that leads to a river valley half mile away that direction. I did recon in the area outside the sanctuary where he headed. There is/are numerous hare trails there. I think I identified his tracks thru part of the corridor but could not be positive because a cabin renter has two fairly big dogs that he lets roam the 10 acres on the escape side. His dogs roamed everywhere and while most prints could be id'd as dog, when melty, they can be confused as a bigger print. That said, I did see 'wolf' tracks blocks away from the sanctuary. Depressing cuz he had run out of the mostly open side of the sanctuary INTO a small heavily forested older growth spruce grove. My hope was he would bed down there if not pressured and then return 100 yards back to the sanctuary when things got quiet again. I think he's gone and won't be back.
    Would like to hear of any 'lone' wolf theories. One buddy suggested that surely this was an OLD wolf that couldn't make it in the big world. To me, it looked healthy and certainly stealthy. It apparently was able to pull down a moose calf. Guy2 that got the shot off, said he watched it fleetingly make a semi circle half around him before returning and trotting right on up to him "just like a dog". Prior to the hunt I had suggested the possible use of shotgun rather than rifle. We decided... rifle. Shootable at both close and further range. But stressed heavily only take the shot if it's a good shot AND it's a SAFE shot! If no shot presents itself, we were gonna back out quietly and reassess. We could always have a redo in a few days.
    Oh well. Had a chance!
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cod View Post
    While we have had wolves nearby the area about every other winter, I would never have believed this wolfs' actions.
    Why would a wolf choose to live in a neighborhood?
    Thoughts? Comments? Questions?
    I would guess a younger animal, recently out on it's own, and holding in the area for awhile due to food, cover, and the attraction of neighborhood dogs. Likely, it's a little wiser now, and moved on.
    ...he who knows nothing is nearer to truth than he whose mind is filled with falsehoods & errors. ~Thomas Jefferson
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    Quote Originally Posted by iofthetaiga View Post
    I would guess a younger animal, recently out on it's own, and holding in the area for awhile due to food, cover, and the attraction of neighborhood dogs. Likely, it's a little wiser now, and moved on.

    Seeing the pic of Jacks 110 pounder and comparing the smallish one I got last year, I'm guessing this one, at about 75-85 pounds after seven sightings. What I would call an medium sized wolf. Nicely furred. I thought it had a 'female' dog face.
    I generally agree with your assessment.
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    Member Smokey's Avatar
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    You know the saying, keep your friends close and your enemies even closer, may apply here!
    Like Akiceman said he had food and nobody bothering him seemed like a good place to camp for a spell...
    Intersting story, too bad your buddies were not carry shotguns stuffed with 4 buck!
    When asked what state I live in I say "The State of Confusion", better known as IL....

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    Quote Originally Posted by akiceman25 View Post
    Great story!

    He'll probably be back. He felt safe and had food. What more would he want?

    May consider talking to neighbors and coming up with a plan to snare it. Set a zillion of them. (Assuming it's a safe area to do so)
    He might not be back if he was his either time he was shot at.
    Hunt Ethically. Respect the Environment.

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    Have you considered that this may be a female looking to, or already denning there in preparation for a litter. Also, could it be possible what you actually have, or had, is a breeding pair.
    Hunt Ethically. Respect the Environment.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SmokeRoss View Post
    He might not be back if he was his either time he was shot at.
    Assuming you meant..."if he was HIT..." Wolf was not hit either time it was shot at. Shots with the 22 took place about two weeks prior to the rifle attempt. No blood was found either attempt and I tracked him both times for hundreds of yards on his tracks.
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    We.........Might get some snow tonight, but it will not last long, with low 40's for tomorrow. I figure to scout the beach tomorrow at first light.

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    Quote Originally Posted by SmokeRoss View Post
    Have you considered that this may be a female looking to, or already denning there in preparation for a litter. Also, could it be possible what you actually have, or had, is a breeding pair.

    When I saw the amount of tracks and trails, coupled with a downed moose, I had this activity pegged as the anywhere from 2-5 wolves and if I would have had to narrow my guess I would have said 2 or 3. As I began my walkabouts in the sanctuary I could never find multiple beds together. Only singles away from the kill site. I took the shot w the 22 just a couple days after discovery of the wolf tracks. After the shots I tracked the wolf and would have swore that there were TWO sets that merged 100 yards from where the shot was. I also thought that I had found, early on, (in areas not yet inundated with tracks/trails) what appeared to me to be a Pair running together. I even told the wife after my shooting attempt, I thought there was a pair cuz one set of tracks appeared bigger than the other at the merge points.
    A couple days after my 22 shots I went in w rifle and saw again, a single wolf elude me... 3 times.
    So I wondered... One wolf or two? Did I already run one off? And yes, I wondered was this a pair with a den which drove them to such confinement?
    To further complicate my thinking... About two days after my 22 shots and I was giving the wolf some breathing time, I took my dog away from the sanctuary and walked the rivers edge below my house. I not only wanted to give the wolf a rest but was wondering if I could find any wolf tracks coming or going across or along the river. As this WAS another possible ingress/egress route to/from the sanctuary. The river is located about 3-400 yards from the edge of the sanctuary. As we walked the edge of the river I looked across and to my utter amazement, I watched a German Shepard slink just like a wolf across the far bank for about 100 ft and dissappear into the brush and trees. I saw him clearly at 100 ft away! (However, I could find NO TRACKS leading to or from the sanctuary on my side of the river. )
    My mind reeled. Had this been a mate to the wolf, but fled? What was a Shepard doing (apparently bedded?) along the Other side of the river? There are no homes within half mile over there. No one over that way owns a Shepard (I contacted a guy I know over there and asked him about it). On top of THAT, I was informed about this time that, a month earlier, a lady who lives a mile from me across the river had lost 2 dogs and that they found at least one of them that had been partially EATEN! (The lady that owned the dogs lives closest to where I shot that wolf last year.).
    So, as you can see, I've had a lot of 'angles' to ponder in this whole situation the last month.
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    I find it very interesting that it seemed afraid of the fence or unable to get through it? It is very abnormal behavior for a wolf to hang out in a 10 acre area for more than a day or three even a lone wolf. It seems obvious that it could see but seems wierd is the fact that it took 3 attempts to clear the wires. It makes me wonder a couple things why did it recognize the fence as a stopping point and what made it this way? Though wolves quite often will come into a community for a scooby or kitty snack I have never witnessed nor heard of them staying in an area like this. It almost makes me wonder if it had been inside an electric fence at one point in it's life or if it had been held in a fenced area and released at some point. Either way I think it will not return it has escaped an area that for some reason held it almost captive. However it may and I say this because what you have found here is in no way typical wolf behavior IMO
    As an added note I missed the end of your latest post I think you may have your answer to some degree the german shepard and it may have bonded in some manner and it had decided that it had a potential mate. If this is the case it very well may return
    meats meat don't knock it till you try it

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    Quote Originally Posted by otterman View Post
    I find it very interesting that it seemed afraid of the fence or unable to get through it? It is very abnormal behavior for a wolf to hang out in a 10 acre area for more than a day or three even a lone wolf. It seems obvious that it could see but seems wierd is the fact that it took 3 attempts to clear the wires. It makes me wonder a couple things why did it recognize the fence as a stopping point and what made it this way? Though wolves quite often will come into a community for a scooby or kitty snack I have never witnessed nor heard of them staying in an area like this. It almost makes me wonder if it had been inside an electric fence at one point in it's life or if it had been held in a fenced area and released at some point. Either way I think it will not return it has escaped an area that for some reason held it almost captive. However it may and I say this because what you have found here is in no way typical wolf behavior IMO
    As an added note I missed the end of your latest post I think you may have your answer to some degree the german shepard and it may have bonded in some manner and it had decided that it had a potential mate. If this is the case it very well may return

    I wished I would have had someone familiar and as interested in wolves as myself who could have shared this experience. There were so many interesting aspects.
    The fence boundary around the parcel was what might be used for horses. Simple steel stakes with only two stranded cables. One a foot off the grd and the other a couple ft above the other. A couple places an old tree had fallen and damaged the fence. A few spots the top wire had come unconnected. The wolf had been in there long enough (by tracks he left) that he had intimate knowledge of every fence span in the entire parcel.
    On the wolf's final escape route, (about an hour and a half after guy 2's shot) I tracked him from near where he was shot at to the fenceline side that he left the sanctuary from. His tracks told me he had loped back and forth along the fenceline twice before finally exiting on the third pass. There were two spots where it's elbows def touched the grd just in front of the fence but did not exit.
    While that was the side of the sanctuary I thought he would exit, it was Not the corner of the side I thought he would exit, as this corner was pretty open country where a road nearly touches that corner. However, it makes sense cuz at the time of this 'panic', guy 1 who was supposedly tracking him, was at that time near the other corner on that side. The corner that contained a very nearby thick grove of mature spruce outside the sanctuary fence that, in fact, wolf did manage to sneak over to. (Interestingly to, just 100 yards from the sanctuary in the mature grove had numerous hare trails. ) Wolf had to be hungary. Why not go get some of those hares?
    With regard to the Shepard.... As crazy as this encounter may appear, I can only scratch my head at this point. Our river is open and flowing hard. The Shepard was across the river. There were NO tracks on my side (sanctuary side) to account for a river Xing. Plus, I am doubtful that a dog would leap off big ice jam piles into a flowing cold river without any immediate deadly pressure on him. Too many better options I think. I could be wrong tho.
    The partially eaten pet dog(s) on the shepard's side of the river may be related. I heard the 2 dogs disappeared about a month before I found the wolf. The distance from the Shepard to the eaten/missing dogs is just under a mile I would guess.
    As strange as the Shepard sighting is, at this point I'm surmising that my wolf and the shep are unrelated. Strange as it is.
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cod View Post
    As strange as the Shepard sighting is, at this point I'm surmising that my wolf and the shep are unrelated.
    I was thinking the same thing. Maybe the shepard just caught a scent and came to investigate...???
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    I guess I didn't realize the shepard was across the river and would say that thought of mine is not correct. If the Shepard was in the fenced area which I had misread it to be than that would be something but not with it that far away
    meats meat don't knock it till you try it

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