Three dozen sheep fall to wolves overnight

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Three dozen sheep fall to wolves overnight

Post by Koa » Thu Jul 11, 2019 8:10 pm

Wolves kill three dozen sheep on Park Falls farm
By Seth Carlson and Anna Maria Hansen, May 15, 2019
APG WISCONSIN

A pack of wolves returned after a three-year hiatus to kill three dozen sheep on a farm north of Park Falls on Monday.

Paul and Judy Canik woke Monday morning to find 31 of their Katahdin lambs and five adult females had been killed by wolves sometime between midnight and 6 a.m.
Read the full article here: https://www.apg-wi.com/wolves-kill-thre ... user-share

While this is an older article, it underscores that wolves do engage in surplus killing.
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Re: Three dozen sheep fall to wolves overnight

Post by GoldenBeauty » Sun Jul 28, 2019 7:07 pm

I'm skeptical about this story. While it is true many of the sheep were lambs, you also had 5 adult ewes. How could the owners not hear their dogs braking, the sound of the wolves growling, and the sheep bleeting? I have yet to see actual photos of this. I think it is extremely unlikely this was caused by rabid wolves (or wolves for that matter!).

This was supposedly by the same exact wolf pack. If they had rabies they would be long gone by now in this 3-year hiatus (and the rabid disease would spread within the area).
Clearly something is up, because even large wolf packs 10-20 won't go into a farm and spend 6 hours killing 31 lambs and 5 adult ewes and hardly bother with the food. It is an essential instinct for wolves to grab as much as they can and eat as much as they can. Wolves can eat as much as 7 lbs and more. There is no reason why they did that, so I'm calling this story fake. It just sounds so bizarre and unrealistic.
My best guess on what "happened": Some person decided to shoot the sheep and the wolves came to bite a few pieces off but didn't bother to eat much because they smelled unfamiliar scents. But like I said, I doubt this story is real.
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Re: Three dozen sheep fall to wolves overnight

Post by Koa » Sun Jul 28, 2019 10:36 pm

GoldenBeauty wrote:
Sun Jul 28, 2019 7:07 pm
I'm skeptical about this story. While it is true many of the sheep were lambs, you also had 5 adult ewes. How could the owners not hear their dogs braking, the sound of the wolves growling, and the sheep bleeting? I have yet to see actual photos of this. I think it is extremely unlikely this was caused by rabid wolves (or wolves for that matter!).
The photos of the Caniks' dead sheep are in the article.

Wolves have been reported to surplus kill. It is a misconception that they do not engage in surplus killing. Please see my extensive post here. I also recommend checking out page 144 of Wolves: Behavior, Ecology and Conservation:
Surplus killing of domestic animals lacking normal defenses against wolf predation may not be unusual (Young and Goldman 1944; Bjarvall and Nilsson 1976; Fritts et al. 1992), but it is rare for wolves to kill wild prey in surplus. All cases of surplus killing of wild prey reported for wolves have occurred during a few weeks in late winter or spring when snow was unusually deep.
If anything, surplus killing of domestic animals (like these sheep here) is more likely, so your claims about this being a "fake article" are unfounded. (Still, wolves can and will engage in surplus killing of wild animals. In 2016, one Wyoming wolf pack killed 19 elk overnight.)
This was supposedly by the same exact wolf pack. If they had rabies they would be long gone by now in this 3-year hiatus (and the rabid disease would spread within the area).

Clearly something is up, because even large wolf packs 10-20 won't go into a farm and spend 6 hours killing 31 lambs and 5 adult ewes and hardly bother with the food. It is an essential instinct for wolves to grab as much as they can and eat as much as they can. Wolves can eat as much as 7 lbs and more. There is no reason why they did that, so I'm calling this story fake. It just sounds so bizarre and unrealistic.

My best guess on what "happened": Some person decided to shoot the sheep and the wolves came to bite a few pieces off but didn't bother to eat much because they smelled unfamiliar scents. But like I said, I doubt this story is real.
I'm not sure what rabies has to do with surplus killing. Wolves afflicted with rabies vacate the pack so as to not spread the disease. A wolf does not need to be rabid to engage in surplus killing.
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