Wisconsin’s first wolf season, which began last Monday, is off to a surprising start as hunters and trappers have already tagged 18 wolves.
“I think 18 wolves in the first week would certainly greatly exceed my expectations,” Fred Strand, a wildlife biologist with the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, told the Duluth News-Tribune. “Those people who were successful had done their prep work and scouting work ahead of time so they knew where to be and what to do.”
Trappers and hunters have been almost equally successful with ten of the 18 wolves taken by hunters and eight by trappers. A full breakdown of the wolf harvest can be found on the Wisconsin DNR website.
The wolf season is set to run through Feb. 28, although harvest quotas can bring the season to a close in individual zones before that date. A maximum of 116 wolves can be harvested during the hunt. The DNR estimates the state’s wolf population at around 850.
Meanwhile, across the border from Wisconsin, Minnesota’s first wolf season is set to begin on Nov. 3. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources estimates a wolf population of 3,000. The DNR hopes to see a harvest of 400 wolves during the season.