This question needs to be answered before anymore wild & domestic animals die. In Wisconsin there’s a joint investigation taking place by US Fish & Wildlife Service, US Forestry Service and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources into who’s setting out poison traps. The poison traps are meat balls laced with poison, and it’s suspected that they were put out to kill gray wolves.

Since December 2018 several wild and domestic animals have been the victims of the poison traps. The DNR recovered a sample of the poison located near a spot where a pet dog was found dead. A photo is attached to this story.

 Poison was found on the ground in rural areas. The pet dogs ate it and died in less than 30 minutes. Wisconsin Public Radio Friday April 19, 2019.

The DNR recovered a sample of the poison located near a spot where a pet dog was found dead. A photo is attached to this story.

Were poison traps set out in the woods to kill gray wolves?

Today’s wild wolf population is flourishing in Wisconsin’s northern and central forests and so does the animosity towards them. In the late 1970s Gray wolves returned to the north woods, and Wisconsin’s Wolf Recovery Program began. Then, in 2011 USF&WS delisted Gray wolves in The Great Lakes, and the Wisconsin Legislature, 2011 Wisconsin Act 169 enacted the following law mandating a wolf hunt:

If the wolf is not listed on the federal endangered list and is not listed on the state endangered list, the department shall allow the hunting and trapping of wolves and shall regulate such hunting and trapping as provided in this section and shall implement a wolf management plan. In regulating wolf hunting and trapping, the department may limit the number of wolf hunters and trappers and the number of wolves that may be taken by issuing wolf harvesting licenses.

A Gray wolf in Wisconsin, photo credit: Snap Shot Wisconsin.

Wisconsin’s Gray wolf was hunted, trapped and chased down with dogs from 2012 to 2014 while off the protections of the Endangered Species Act and under the management of the state of Wisconsin. The mismanagement of Gray wolves by the state of Wisconsin ended in December 2014 as a Federal Judge ordered them back on the Endangered Species List.

U.S. District Judge Beryl Howell in Washington, D.C., ruled that the removal was “arbitrary and capricious” and violated the federal Endangered Species Act.

In her ruling, Howell wrote: “Wolves are the subject of heated disputes, with those on every side of the issue offering heartfelt arguments as to how best to manage this unique species. The last decade of litigation is a testament to those passions.”

Howell said that while the Fish and Wildlife Service and others may have “practical policy reasons” for removing protections for wolves, federal regulations protecting endangered species trump those concerns.

“At times, a court must lean forward from the bench to let an agency know, in no uncertain terms, that enough is enough,” Howell wrote in the decision. “This case is one of those times.” Source Journal Sentinel December 19, 2014.

Today’s wild wolf population is flourishing in Wisconsin’s northern and central forests and so is the animosity towards them. Are those who harbor animosity towards Wisconsin’s Gray wolf behind these poisonings?

Going back to the year 2010 there’s plenty evidence found online regarding using poison to kill wolves.

The post, on the Lobo Watch website, titled “Is It Time To Start Fighting Dirty?”, is cloaked as a hypothetical but it’s real meaning is clear, wolves need to be removed illegally because they aren’t being killed fast enough by the state, to satisfy the wolf haters. Or heaven forbid if Judge Molloy relists wolves this summer and takes away their opportunity to kill more wolves. It’s another version of SSS except it’s Poison, Shovel and Shut Up. Maybe not even shovel, just shut up. Source Howlng For Justice, June 7, 2010.

…”Everybody’s surmising that it was put out to kill wolves.”

Capt. Dave Zebro, northern region conservation warden for the DNR, said the agency is aware of that speculation.

“But, we can’t put any validity to it yet,” said Zebro.

Zebro said the DNR is working with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to pinpoint the poison. He said they suspect it’s the pesticide carbofuran.

“It’s used a lot in farming for insects, and we’ve seen it used in potato farmers and stuff like that,” he said.

“We’re in the process of working with U.S. Fish and Wildlife on having the species that we’ve been able to recover, including the most recent domestic dog tested through the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Laboratory,” said Lundin. “That’s where we’re going to be able to, hopefully, determine that there is a connection or there’s not.” Source Wisconsin Public Radio Friday April 19, 2019.

Gray wolves have been the target of an extermination policy for centuries. Watch the following video PBS.

One of my readers said that a group reported that they knew about these poisonings and tipped off the law enforcement in a private meeting in 2017. I wanted to know more. I checked back into Facebook posts, and google but there wasn’t a single Facebook post or anything online until recently regarding wolves being poisoned using Xylitol; Except for the Howling For Justice Story in 2010. Source Howlng For Justice, June 7, 2010.

I emailed Todd Schaller, Chief WardenBureau of Law Enforcement, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to find out if during a private meeting in 2017, were they provided with evidence that anti-wolf advocates were poisoning wolves with Xylitol, and also provided with multiple screenshots of anti-wolf Wisconsin residents telling others how to use the poison on Facebook posts.

The following is Chief Schaller’s response:

“In checking with staff in the northern region they do not recall receiving any specific tips, screen shots or information related to the use of Xylitol.

I also emailed Capt. Dave Zebro, northern region conservation warden for the DNR, and the following is his response:

“I’m comfortable saying no evidence, photo’s etc were shared with us during this meeting. There may have been some dialogue about poisoning but no evidence was turned over to us. I did check with another DNR Warden and USFS Law Enforcement officer who were at the meeting and they confirmed no photos or evidence of either kind were shared with us.”

A concern is that if anyone knew about this in 2017 why are there no posts warning the public about these poisonings?

A beloved dog was one of the victims of this unspeakable act!

Clark Cate of Wausaukee lost his dog, Ava, in March.

“I could see she was eating something. I called her off it and went up to what she was eating and we couldn’t identify it,” Cate says.

Ava was eating a chunk of ground meat that contained poison.

“About 10 minutes later, she came out of the woods stumbling, convulsing, hyper-salivating,” Cate said. “We took her to the truck and within 30 minutes she passed away in my arms.” Source WPR

Clark Cate has started a Go Fund Me to raise money for a reward. The money would go to the person who provides information on who is poisoning the animals. CLICK HERE TO DONATE

Multiple poison traps have been discovered in the state over three counties. Were these poisonings committed because of animosity towards gray wolves? What would of happened if a young child, say a toddler, gotten into the poison traps?

If you find potential evidence like the following please turn it in immediately. Recently on Facebook screenshots have circulated with the names of the hunters who are telling other hunters to use the sweetener Xylitol to kill wolves. If law enforcement were doing undercover investigation work on this case the culprits have been tipped off by now because of public posts like these.

“The public should be eyes/ears of potential violations and report it to DNR Hotline. The public should not get involved with the actual investigation, handling evidence or contacting potential suspects.” Email from Todd Schaller, Chief Warden– Bureau of Law Enforcement, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

The DNR, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and U.S. Forest Service are asking for the public’s help in this case. If you have information, leave a tip by calling or texting 1-800-TIP-WDNR or 1-800-847-9367. Report your tip online at

The investigation into who’s poisoning wild and domestic animals in Wisconsin is ongoing.

Featured image is of an Italian wolf illegally killed with poison.

2 thoughts on “Who’s setting out poison traps in Wisconsin’s north woods and why?

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