April 18, 2014

Wolf hunt winds down

(Photo: WDNR)

Wisconsin’s first wolf hunt is another step closer to being done for the year. The Department of Natural Resources is closing down the hunt in Zone Five, which covers parts of west central Wisconsin. The move comes after the quota of 23 wolves was reached in that area.

Wildlife ecologist Bill VanderZouwen says that leaves just two of the six zones open. Zone Six, which covers much of the southern two thirds of the state, has just one wolf remaining before harvest limits are reached. Zone Three, which stretches across west central Wisconsin, has seven wolves still available.

VanderZouwen says he expects the remaining wolf in Zone Six to be taken soon, although it could still be awhile before Zone Three hits its limit. He believes that’s largely due to access issues, with a large amount of private land in the region.

The season started October 15th and is supposed to run through the end of February or when hunters hit harvest limits of 116 wolves statewide. Zones started closing in mid-November, as quotas were reached.

VanderZouwen says hunters proved pretty effective, although the agency has been able to respond quickly and close down zones to avoid missing population goals.

AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (1:05)