There have been numerous reports lately of wolves attacking and chasing people's pets in Northern Minnesota. In fact, the United States Department of Agriculture trapped eight wolves in a problem area because people were reporting their pets being taken.

Eight wolves trapped and euthanized in Northern Minnesota

The newspaper Ely Echo reports that eight wolves were trapped between Ely and Babbit, Minnesota, due to dogs being taken.

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At first, they tried to deter the wolves from the area, but that didn't work. More reports were coming in, so they had to make the difficult decision to trap and euthanize the wolves. Minnesota Department Of Natural Resources conservation officer Anthony Bermel explains that it's difficult to relocate wolves once they identify areas where humans live as food sources.

Wolves are hungry

The low population of deer in areas is leaving wolves hungry, and they are getting creative in what they eat: including choosing pets. Deer also have been moving in towards lake properties and towns, and with them, attracting wolves. People leaving deer feed out also plays into bringing both deer and wolves closer to residential conflict areas.

More calls have been coming in about pets being chased and taken by wolves, and they also aren't afraid of humans.

In the Minnesota DNR weekly conservation report, Officer Anthony Bermel reiterated that the public should be careful with their pets and keep them closer for the time being.

CO Anthony Bermel (Babbitt) worked a variety of enforcement activities throughout the week and weekend including trapping, waterfowl, grouse, and decorative forestry product enforcement. A good push of migrating ducks was observed, including a couple surf scoters harvested in the area. Enforcement action was taken for shooting from a motor vehicle, no small-game license, no state waterfowl stamp, no HIP certification, failure to carry consent for decorative forest products, and driving after revocation. Be alert with your pets as numerous reports of wolf attacks have been coming in, especially with the low deer populations.

When should you report wolves to authorities?

Just because you see a wolf or a pack hanging around isn't reason enough to report it as the DNR says there is nothing we can do. They are federally protected animals. However, if a pet or livestock has been attacked or kill, then the USDA Wildlife Services Division will investigate it.

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Gallery Credit: Dom DiFurio & Jacob Osborn