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Downstate wolf: Shot near Walnut

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Apparently, we better add another wolf to the wild stories around 21st Century Illinois.


A reliable reader sent these photos of an apparent wolf (it weighed 140 pounds) shot near Walnut in northwestern Illinois last week.

More to come as we get it.


In the 21st century, there have been at least four confirmed wolves killed in Illinois.

Three were killed by coyote hunters, the first by Randy Worker in Marshall County on Dec. 29, 2002. Seth Hall shot one in December 2005 in Pike County. In 2008, another was shot in Jo Daviess County.

The first confirmed report in modern times around Chicago outdoors was hit by a vehicle just outside of Chain O'Lakes State Park on Feb. 17, 2005.

This is the time of year for roaming young male wolves to reach Illinois. We are fast approaching the point where another wild wolf in Illinois is not major news.

And that is good news in my world.

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Add yet another modern Illinois wolf tale, this one of what may be the first good photo of a wolf in modern Illinois.... Read More


Looks like a young wolf.
Lean and fit, -bright white teeth. Healthy.
Long distance traveler from Wisconsin perhaps?

FYI... Sunday morning around 3:30am I was driving home and saw a canine trot across the road but it was bigger than the coyotes we have in the area and I immediately thought it was a Wolf. I used to have a Wolf/Hybrid pet so I am familiar with the size. This was in McHenry County between Cary and Oakwood Hills. Good to know that this WAS a possibility.

Sad news. My best advice for the wolves and cougars that may get to the Illinos border is "turn around". Such rare animals being shot on sight is a real embarrassment for this state.

I have to agree with Mikeh. Dale, I do not know why you want to see more wolves in Illinois. The only thing that will happen to the wolves is they will be shot on sight by a hunter without a conscience. Until the wolves are protected, I wish they would just stay away.

A thing is right when it tends to preserve the integrity, stability and beauty of the biotic community. It is wrong when it tends otherwise.

I want to see wolves establish and survive here. I've long said that. May the day come when a sighting happens that is nothing too noteworthy. And I am beginning to think I may live that long.

Dale, I would like to see wolves establish here. It would be great to see something like that in the wild. However, it just seems to me that won't happen. Seems like everytime one appears, it ends up shot.

You people seem to think that it would be great to re-establish wolves in IL.....How are you going to feel when they don't bother with the hard to catch deer and turn to easier prey such as domestic pets (Possibly YOURS)? Or worse yet, as there basic instinct directs them, smaller humans such as childern who are an easy target for them. Do some research and open your eyes!!!

Why in the world would you people want Wolves in Illinois? They are predators just like Coyotes, worthless! All they do is deplete the population of the of animals in the state. Then you will all bitch about that. They ALL need to be shot on sight, just like coyotes!!!

This is how it always starts. You all tree huggers want wolves and the next thing you know, the WHOLE STATE will be CRAWLING with WEREWOLVES!!! WE need to SHOOT THEM ALL RIGHT NOW dadgummit!!! Load up the silver bullets!!!

In response to the poster "Me":

Wolves are native to Illinois. They have a rightful place in the ecosystem. I just hope they stay away until the state pulls out of the dark ages with its wildlife laws.

We are predators.Should we be shot on site?

The wolves were here first. Predators play a crucial role in the ecosystem. If you look at Yellowstone, reintroducing wolves has changed the whole park. The deer, elk, and bison populations are healthier due to wolves cutting out the weak, injured, and sick. Trees are even rebounding because the elk aren't free to come out in the open all the time to eat the sprouts and saplings.

It's a very uneducated, narrow-minded view that all predators should be eradicated. Use a little caution, keep an eye on your pets and kids, and there's no reason we can't live with wolves. Until just recently, there has never been a confirmed killing of a human by wolves.

Wolves are a native species.

Suburbanites are the invasive, destructive exotics.

I saw a wolf this summer in plano, il while fly fishing; it was the size of a german shepard on steroids! about 20 yards away in broad daylight.
did research just to make sure

To say the wolfs are not coming back to IL is like a Indian chief saying kill that frontiersman no more will come. Like it or not THE WOLFS ARE COMING BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

haha keeping hunters in any state from killing wolves is a laugh! wolves WILL be back and they WILL be shot. As long as they continue to kill like they have been in places such as montana, idaho, and wyoming. While working out there one summer i remember a wolf pack having to be annihilated because they were killing herds of elk and just eating the tongue and leaving the bodies behind to rot. they are killing machines

read some history... people were absolutely terrified of these things in the 1800's

1986 or 87 at a park in Oak wood Hills Cary Illinois my friend and I pulled up to a picnic area parked. We got out of the car and the empty picnic area. It was a warm summer evening. We we're sitting there when a.pack of large wolves came up the hill. They were almost to us when we slammed the door of the car and drove away. We had seen them comimh and ran for the car. I have told this story to family over the years and told that this is not possible. I know different and the photos of the wolf with this article confirms it. I believe that the wolves live in the forest. This was not my only siting of wolves in Oak Wood Hills. Once my friend and I pullled out of his driveway and a very very large wolf jumped on to the Hood of his car and growled. We were very shaken up. The wolf ran off and was not seen again.

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This page contains a single entry by Dale Bowman published on March 14, 2010 8:45 PM.

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