Joe Fleming, of Spillars Cove, Newfoundland, shot an 82-pound canine last week in the Canadian province. Wildlife officials initially believed it was a coyote, but DNA testing is being conducted on the animal to determine exactly what it is.
“I haven’t seen anything like it before. I haven’t seen a track like it before. … I’ve been hunting for a long time and this is the biggest one I’ve seen. The biggest one I’ve weighed,” Fleming told The Telegram, of St. Johns.
Speculation is running wild on the Internet about what the animal could be since the canine weighs more than twice as much as a normal coyote and looks similar to a wolf, yet it was shot on an island thought to be void of wolves since the 1930s. Opinions vary from it being a coyote, a wolf, a coyote-wolf hybrid or a coyote-dog hybrid.
Hair and blood samples have been taken and testing at the Memorial University of Newfoundland will help determine what species the animal is or if it is a hybrid, according to The Telegram. Steve Carr, of the biology department at MUN, told The Telegram the animal could be a mix of a wolf and a coyote or a mix between a coyote and a husky.
Fleming found tracks of the animal that indicated it was traveling with a much smaller coyote. He decided to hunt the animal using an electronic caller in the area he found the tracks.
“I turned on a male challenge call, which means there’s another male trying to take over his area or his female coyotes, and I’d say within three minutes he was coming in,” Fleming told the Huffington Post.
So, what do you think it is?
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