Wisconsin DNR Approves Wolf Hunt To Begin Feb. 22, Permit Applications Open Tuesday

by Atlanta Northcutt

There’s a new lottery taking place in Wisconsin, and it’s directed solely towards hunters.

A special lottery is being held statewide for those interested in bagging a wolf. 4,000 permits will be issued to applicants.

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources came together to reach a decision on what the quota should be regarding the state’s wolf hunt. They agreed that 200 is the total number of wolves that are allowed to be hunted during that time.

Wisconsin Wolves

Estimates from the state board show one hunter will be located in every 4-square miles. This is a huge difference compared to the 10 hunters that are in every square-mile during deer hunting season.

“Because there’s such a short window here to accomplish this harvest by the end of February, by upping the number of hunters in the field, it will give us a better shot at filling that quota,” says Greg Kazmierski.

The state DNR is allotting 20 times the permits for this wolf season since it’s a great deal shorter than all of the other hunting seasons. The hope in doing so is to allow an exact number of permits so they’ll meet their quota of 400 wolves.

The price of hunting permits is $10 and licenses cost $49.

Are You Howlin’ to Be In the Lottery?

If interested in joining the hunt then your application must be filled out on Feb. 16 at 12:01 a.m. in order to obtain a permit. If the 4,000 number is met, then the lottery will officially come to an end.

Those who are chosen to participate will be notified on Feb. 22. The winners can take off into the woods to bag a wild wolf once they’ve bought their harvest tag. Feb. 28 is the last day to legally hunt any wolves.

What is the Purpose of Wolf Hunting?

The staff came up with the quota number being 4,000 due to several factors. These focus on the most up-to-date population estimate, how the public responded to earlier harvests, the current management plan, scientific literature, and population model projections, reports the Journal Sentinel.

“It is near the center point of what the models would estimate will result in stabilization, and so there is some probability that it will lead to population decline, and some probability it will lead to population increase,” says David Macfarland of the Wisconsin DNR.

The Wolf Hunt Season Gets Political

The state of Wisconsin has a law mandating that the DNR holds a wolf-hunting season from November until the end of February.

However, Republican lawmakers have been demanding an impromptu start to hunting these animals since they are now worried that Joe Biden will change the laws on when and how to hunt.

With Biden being America’s newly-elected president, he has already signed several bills with a focus on wildlife and nature conservation. These facts make Republicans fearful that President Biden will stop this hunting season altogether to protect these animals.

… As Well As Personal

One advocate says she’s glad hunters still have a season.

“They need to protect the people from the wolves, and they need to protect the wolves from the people,” says Laurie Grosskopf.

Laurie also thinks hunting these animal may help keep them away from heavily populated areas.

“We will have wolves. The question is where are they appropriate? Is it in the deeply forested areas? That would be better,” she adds.