Giant Canadian Grey Wolves in Idaho – Fact or Photoshop?

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The other day, my kind-of father in law (I say kind of because I had a child with his son but we were never married) sent me an email with a story about giant wolves being hunted in Idaho. Apparently, there is a population of rather enormous wolves in Idaho and each year, a certain amount of ‘tags’ are awarded for people to hunt them to keep the population under control.

Because they’re huge, and dangerous…and hunt in packs of about 20 and “kill for fun” as one website claims.

It appears that the wolves aren’t just your run-of-the-mill wolves, they are a very large breed of Canadian grey wolf that can weigh upwards of 180 lbs…

So what are they doing in Idaho? Well, funny you should ask, because I asked myself the same question. Back in 1995, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service introduced 35 Canadian grey wolves into central Idaho and the Yellowstone area of Wyoming as an experimental introduction, because the Idaho Timberwolf was down to about 80.

Now they’ve multiplied and roam in large packs of about 20 around the rural areas of Idaho, western Montana and western Wyoming…killing livestock, pets and possibly small children. (yes, I am rolling my eyes)

Scary, right?

Now, I am sort of leery about anything that comes through as a forward email…so off to Google I went. I found about a dozen articles on websites talking about these giant killer wolves, none of which were on reputable websites. About half of them had comments ranging from the good ole boy’s typical reaction to anything involving hunting like “Git-r-done” to the “this is obviously photoshopped” and I am sitting here wondering…

With all of the information across the Internet in today’s day, why can’t I find one single legitimate article about these supposed killer wolves?

Comments

    • says

      I think it is photoshopped…plus all of the native Idaho residents that have experience with these wolves seem to say that they are not really that big and they do not hunt in such large packs.

      • Shannon says

        Unfortunately I don’t think this one is photo shopped. I live here in Northern Idaho and have seen local pics in newspapers here, not to mention I have seen the tracks of one of these wolves. Plus my friend and his dad were out hunting last season and one came across their path as they walked over an old logging road and it was as long as the road was wide. The estimated about 6 feet long. The cougars are huge here too. I joked with my best friends when I moved up here that they have just about every scary animal found in the US except for alligators… lol

        • says

          WOW! Remind me never to go to Idaho and hang out in the woods. We have alligators in Miami, but you basically know where they are…and only the Crocodiles are really aggressive. ;)

    • says

      I looked on Wikipedia too, but like you said, it seems like it’s untrue. Almost every story I found on the internet about them had the same photos as the email that my FIL sent me. LOL

  1. Dana says

    From what I hear, there’s not one incident on record of a wolf ever killing a person. I don’t know if that’s true, but I have *heard* it. And honestly, even when a domestic dog has killed someone, it’s usually because the dog was sick or there was a social misunderstanding of some type–the dog was afraid of getting hurt, the dog got stared at too long (that’s a challenge to a fight, in dog language), etc. Not because the dog was hunting. And they *do* hunt. Just not people.

    And wolves? Well, dogs aren’t that far removed from wolves.

    I was once roomies with a half-wolf, half-German shepherd hybrid. Lupi was one of the sweetest dogs I ever met. She was even gentle with kittens. After one of them swiped her across the nose for coming too close, mind you!

    • says

      WOW! The text in that post is exactly what my father in law included in the email he sent me, it must have been the original source.

  2. says

    This might seem suspicous if it were just the one photo, but if you google large or giant Idaho wolves you’ll see maybe a dozen photo’s of hunters with these huge wolves. If you check out Youtube you’ll see video’s of people being stalked by these animals while out in the woods. Even a couple of ladies with their dogs walking on a rual road were confronted by a pack that scared them half to death. If you check with the fish and game they will tell you the truth. There are estimates of up to 2,000 in just Idaho alone. An animal that size that travels in packs of up to 20 and they are not affraid of humans, infact they stalk humans. That’s something to be delt with. The Idaho dept of fish and game website has the stats on the real deal. These wolves are preditors and are agressive. They are responsible for killing 120 sheep on just one ranch in Montana in 2011. That’s on the fish and game website. I realize we need to not go crazy about this but doing nothing doesn’t seem to be an option. I don’t approve of senseless killing but I deffinitely don’t want to put an animals life above a humans.

    • Shannon says

      I have witnessed this myself. My friend and I were hiking up here just north of Cavendish towards Deer Creek, and we were doing a hiking loop in an old logging area. At the start of our hike we saw old tracks of moose, deer, etc and saw some dried out wolf skat. (growing up with coyotes I know the size difference), then on our way back from the hike while we finished the loop I stopped dead in my tracks because I caught wind of a musty smell, then a poop smell. Where we had walked, right over our tracks was fresh wolf skat, plus you could see where the tall grass was pushing down as something had walked the trail right behind/parallel to us. As we walked closer to our truck the musty/musky smell didn’t go away but the skat smell faded… Needless to say, my friend Justin told me to get in the truck asap. He’s lived up here for a long time and has gone hunting numerous times and knows the area. When he says to get in the car because he is uneasy, I’m doing it.

  3. IdahoCitizen says

    Mike, it would seem to me that the women in the video with three dogs, had one dog bitten (not killed). If we are talking about giant 180-230lbs wolves stalking you and they kill for fun, how do you explain these three women and two of he dogs never being touched? We will not hear about what the dog did, did it lunge at them, bark repeatedly, stare the wolves down? These are all things ‘dogs’ do to communicate and most deceit dogs will in fact protect their guardians from a threat (real or not). Those things need to be thought about as well, because killer wvea don’t walk away from a meal of 6 that easily. Have you seen a pack take down an elk? Those women and dogs where a pretty easy meal.

  4. Korbu says

    The pictures are photo shopped. All of the wolves are in the same position (Being bodily help upright), and considering how big and heavy these wolves supposedly are, it’d be quite a task to hold them up in that position for any length of time. Especially the one where the guy is actually holding the wolf up off the ground, where it’s feet barely even scrape the dirt. None of the guy’s seem to show any sort of strain in their facial expressions either as they hold the wolves up, which would be highly unlikely if they were actually bodily lifting a 150-225 pound animal.
    The women who were taking their dogs along the trail when they had an encounter with wolves (regular variety, not giant) were quite stupid. There was already a warning posted on the entrance to the trail stating that a person’s dog had been attacked and killed by wolves there earlier, yet they still went on the trail. Not only that, but they were also running on the trail. When you run, any predator that sees you is going to have it’s “hunting drive” engaged, and think you’re a fleeing prey. Very bad idea to jog or run in wilderness areas with known predators.

  5. Pat Coburn says

    My younger son (36 yrs old) and his family live in Idaho, western central area. They had 5 wolves, 2 black and 3 grey/white, stalking their horse a few nights
    ago. My son went out with his Marlin and a .45 pistol to scare them off. They don’t scare easily at all, and while they were about 100 yds out, and it was night, he could tell with the flashlight that they were huge. Not saying yeah or nay on the photoshop issue, but the sheriff and the fish and game came out next day, found the tracks , and confirmed to my son that yes, there are some very big and very aggressive wolves in the area, and there have been for some time.

  6. SlinginIron says

    My friend is actually this guy’s (the individual pictured) chiropractor and when I saw a recent set of these pictures he e-mailed me to tell me that this guy isn’t a really tall individual, 5’8″ or 5’9″ but, he is pretty well built. Woeking in agriculture in eastern Washington, I have seen a couple of wolves in the past year and there is absolutely no way to misidentify them with a coyote or “big” dog within 75 yards they are massive and nowhere near as timid as a coyote. I do know that this particular photo is not photoshopped.

  7. says

    I have seen a wolf that is about 150 pounds it is on my facebook pics I personally took the pic. Facebook name dwayne micheal barnaby That particular wolf was shot because it was killing dogs in town, and it was not afraid of people, a lot of people walking home at night were gripped in fear. However this wolf even though it looks huge is only average up here in Fort good hope NT Canada The biggest wolf ever shot was 214 pounds and was over 9 feet long. Wolf lovers dont get mad at the hunter if see the pic. I would rather have a dead wolf than a dead dog. These large wolf just yank dogs out of the chains. Some owners here there dogs screaming in pain. And they kill them by tearing there dogs stomach out. Wish i can show you a dog that has been killed by a wolf, but it is to horrible to show.

  8. Dan Fickes says

    I lived in Cody Wyoming for a number of years. A friend of mine recently shot a wolf near Cody that weighed nearly 200 lbs. I have a photo but I do not see a way to post it. Some facts: Since 2000 their are 20 documented cases of wolves Killing people. This includes Candice Berner, a 32 year old female jogger who was killed by wolves near Anchorage Alaska. Details can be found on Wikipedia. The story about 120 sheep being killed in a single incident near Dillon MT is also true. It happened on the Rebish Konen livestock ranch. If you go to the Canadian Geographic web site and search Grey Wolf it states the Canadian Grey Wolf attains an AVERAGE weight of 70kg which is 154 lbs. I did not find it difficult to find credible sources for the size and history of the Canadian Grey Wolf.

  9. JR says

    I hate that they are killing them. I love the wolf but I know they can be dangerous. I just wish they could figure some other way to control the population. I isn’t there fault they are there.

  10. scott says

    I just took a picture of our Malamute laying next to a 4 foot long construction level he’s kind of curled up and he’s still longer than the 4 foot level. Also that’s not adding his tail. He weights 120 pounds not 180.

    • says

      I have an alaskan malamute too! She is about 100 pounds and she stands at about 4 feet too. If you put anything that big next to something small, they look monstrous!

  11. Sniffer says

    “JR
    January 16, 2013 at 9:04 pm · Reply

    I hate that they are killing them. I love the wolf but I know they can be dangerous. I just wish they could figure some other way to control the population.”
    Well maybe if we love them and hug them and ask nicely the’ll stop being visious killers. You try talking to them first!

  12. Rebecca says

    I had just moved to Laramie, Wyoming and I was driving down the freeway one day. I believe it was 287. I looked over and saw the biggest wolf I had ever seen running through a field near the freeway. There are not supposed to be any wolves here either. I am originally from northern Minnesota and have seen wild Timberwolves before. I’d say this thing was 4 of them put together. It was definitely near the size of the wolf in this picture. I have read a bit about grey wolves. According to statistics, some of them do get this big. Further, I have read they are leaving Yellowstone and migrating to other areas because of all the people that come through Yellowstone. They are leaving because of the crowds and going to other states in rural areas.

  13. Rebecca says

    I wanted to add that I don’t like seeing them killed either. This wolf was pretty awesome to behold. I don’t like that they have changed the laws in Wyoming and are now hunting them.

  14. Dixie says

    People love big news and repeat happenings larger then it really is. This picture of the man holding up, a supposedly Canadian wolf, is a little far fetched….not to say wolves cant be big but if you read the facts on wolves you will see that the wolf has no boundaries and have been in Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho forever. They have mixed the gene pool with other species of wolves and have been navagating all these states forever. Now that people are being told how dangerous they are suppose to be, wolves are being hunted and killed at an alarming rate, hunters are killing babies of wolves not even a year old, just because they can. The Myth is there is no such thing as a non-native canadian wolf.

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