Since 2018, someone has been poisoning wolves and other animals in northern Wisconsin. Wolf Patrol believes it is bear hunters acting in retaliation for their hunting dogs killed by wolves in the very same areas. Most of the meat-laced poisons have been discovered recently on national forest lands in Forest, Florence and Marinette counties, exactly where more bear hounds are killed by wolves than anywhere else in Wisconsin.
Wolf Patrol suspects Wisconsin bear hunters of carrying out the poisonings because in recent years calls have increased for bear hunters to take the law into their own hands and reduce Wisconsin’s growing wolf population. It is common for Wolf Patrol monitors to see anti-wolf bumperstickers on hound hunting trucks in the poisoning areas and for years now wolves have been showing up dead in and around Forest County, Wisconsin.
In the 2019 bear hound training & hunting season, a total of 21 bear hounds were killed by wolves in northern Wisconsin in what has become an annual tradition since gray wolves recolonized the state’s forest lands. Bear hunters in Wisconsin have called for the illegal killing of wolves ever since the animals were returned to federal protection in 2014.
Now it’s not only wolves, but coyotes, otters, raptors, weasels, raccoons, people’s pets and even other hunting dogs are dying in increasing numbers due to the continued poisoning which first was reported in December 2018. The poisoners are suspected of throwing meatballs laced with a powerful commercially available insecticide that kills anyone that ingests the tainted meat in minutes.
Wolf Patrol is calling on the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) and the U.S. Forest Service to request a federal investigation into the poisonings which have targeted federally protected wildlife on federal lands in both Wisconsin and Michigan. Whoever is responsible for these illegal acts is violating the federal Endangered Species Act as well as many other laws since it is suspected that state lines are being crossed to commit these crimes, mostly on the Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest.
Wolf Patrol is also calling on other organizations, both pro-animal and pro-hunting to add to our $5,000 reward for information on whoever is responsible (bear hunters) so they can be brought to justice. The $1,000 reward currently offered by U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is not enough of an incentive for any informed parties to come forward, so we are asking that any organization that condemns these actions contribute to Wolf Patrol’s Reward Fund.
Also, please send a polite email to WDNR’s new Chief Warden & USFS officials asking that this poisoning of wildlife and pets be taken more seriously and a federal investigation that questions bear hunters who advocate poaching begin before more animals die more horrific and deaths.
Send your emails to:
Chequamegon-Nicolet National Forest officials:
WDNR Chief Warden Casey Krueger: