Yellowstone’s Most Famous Wolf Shot by Rancher
An alpha female wolf named 832F who became one of the most recognized wild creatures to visitors of the famed Yellowstone National Park was fatally shotby a local rancher after it wandered outside park boundaries, reports the LA Times.
Visitors and scientists alike called this wolf a rock star after it became the most visible member of a pack residing inside Yellowstone.
Many considered 832F the most famous wolf in the world. She served as a protector and guide to the Lamar Canyon pack of wolves, but her shooting by a local rancher was deemed legal because she was no longer within the protective boundaries of Yellowstone when she was killed. 2012 is the first year that it has become legal for hunters to shoot wolves in Wyoming.
John Hayes, of the photography and wildlife blog Oops John, wrote that there was something special about watching the wolf pack, led by its famous leader, in its natural habitat.
“Alpha Female 832F, despite her age, or maybe because of it, is a consummate professional at what she does – which is to protect and guide the Lamar Canyon Pack from one generation to the next in a land wild and unforgiving,” Hayes wrote.
“Crafty and courageous, 832F has a dedicated cadre of enthusiasts who faithfully chronicle her every move, such as they can. Wolf-watching is addictive. I went to Yellowstone in June for a two-week visit and ended up staying three months. And while I was never part of the ‘inner circle’ of lupophiles, I quickly found myself crawling out of bed day after day at 4 a.m. and driving an hour and a half in the dark to be on site at sunrise.”
Marc Cooke with the group Wolves of the Rockies alleged hunters were targeting collared animals, either for bragging rights or out of spite for wolf restoration in the Northern Rockies.
According to KSL, shooting a collared wolf is not illegal if it’s done within state hunting regulations.
“The proportion of collared wolves is too high to believe this is not being done deliberately,” Cooke said. “It’s wrong, and the world needs to know this.”
832F was born inside the park in 2006 and was recently fitted with a GPS device under her fur to help scientists better understand the pack’s movements and how to best conserve this species.