The Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service are trying to find the person involved in a recent wolf poaching case in Mackinac County.
A dead wolf was found the last week of April near the west side of Engadine in Mackinac County. Examination of the wolf revealed it died from a gunshot wound.
A reward is being offered for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of those involved. Anyone with information is asked to call the Report All Poaching Hotline at 800-292-7800, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, or to contact their nearest DNR office or conservation officer. It is possible to leave information anonymously while remaining eligible for a reward.
Wolves are a protected, nongame species in Michigan. Wolves may only be legally killed while in the act of preying upon livestock or dogs, under a depredation permit from the DNR Wildlife Division, or in the defense of human safety.
"Now that wolves have been removed from the endangered species list and are under state management, there are effective means in place to deal with wolves that are causing property damage or that are perceived safety threats," said Lt. Skip Hagy of the DNR's Law Enforcement Division in Newberry. "Killing wolves illegally is not the answer as it only undermines the process of effective wolf management. The DNR will continue to investigate and prosecute any wolf poaching cases."
The penalty for illegally killing a wolf is up to 90 days in jail and/or fines of up to $1,000, plus restitution of $1,500. Convicted poachers also lose hunting privileges for at least four years. Additional penalties may apply under federal law.
For more information on Michigan's wolf population, greater detail about the laws governing legal take of depredating wolves, and to see the state's Wolf Management Plan click here.