Michigan DNR: 2 Men Confess To Separate Illegal Wolf Killings

January 18, 2019 - 3:41 pm

GREENLAND TWP. (WWJ/(AP) - Authorities say two men confessed to illegally killing wolves in separate poaching incidents in the Upper Peninsula.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources announced Friday that prosecutors are reviewing the cases for possible charges against the men == a 58-year-old from Greenland and a 67-year-old from Menominee Township

 Gray wolves are a protected species under the Endangered Species Act and can only legally be killed in defense of human safety.

A collar on an adult female wolf in Ontonagon County's Greenland Township indicated Monday that the wolf had died, according to the DNR, which determined the animal was shot by the 58-year-old.

During last year's firearm deer hunting season, a collar signal from Menominee County's Lake Township indicated that a 1-year-old male wolf died Nov. 19. The collar was found covered in blood, but it wasn't attached to the wolf. The DNR said the 67-year-old confessed this week.

The names of the men are being withheld pending their arraignments in the respective county district courts.

The DNR investigates and pursues vigorous prosecution of any wolf poaching cases. Illegally killing a wolf is punishable by up to 90 days in jail, a $1,000 fine, or both, and the cost of prosecution.

“Wolves are examples of important wildlife species that play a critical predator role in the ecosystems of the Upper Peninsula,” said Lt. Ryan Aho, a district law supervisor in Marquette. “Our conservation officers did some great work in obtaining confessions from these two individuals who killed wolves collared for study purposes by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.”

Suspected poaching violations may be reported 24 hours a day, seven days a week to the DNR's Report All Poaching hotline at 800-292-7800.

For more information on wolves in the state, visit Michigan.gov/Wolves.