The Big Story Blog

DNR: 'Immediate threat' wolves can be shot after de-list

Posted at 11:04 AM on December 21, 2011 by Paul Tosto
Filed under: Environment

One key question: Is it OK to shoot gray wolves once they are off the federal endangered species list? Here's the Minnesota DNR's answer:

Can I shoot a wolf to protect my livestock or pet?

Once wolves are removed from the list of threatened and endangered species, owners of livestock, guard animals, or domestic animals may shoot or destroy wolves that pose an immediate threat to their animals, on property they own or lease in accordance with local statutes.

"Immediate threat" means the observed behavior of a wolf in the act of stalking, attacking, or killing livestock, a guard animal, or a domestic pet under the supervision of the owner.

Additionally, the owner of a domestic pet may shoot or destroy a wolf posing an immediate threat on any property, as long as the owner is supervising the pet.

Current law forbids killing a gray wolf unless it's to defend a human life.

Also, MPR News reporter Stephanie Hemphill reports the DNR is working on a hunting and trapping plan for the gray wolf that could be ready for next fall if the Legislature approves.

UPDATE: Hemphill tells us that in the southern part of the state, that immediate threat is not required, but farmers can only kill wolves on their own land.


About Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto

Paul Tosto writes the Big Story Blog for MPR News. He joined the newsroom in 2008 after more than 20 years reporting on education, politics and the economy for news wires and newspapers across the country.