Researchers at UW-Madison say a second wolf hunt last year would have risked Wisconsin’s wolf population dropping to undesirable levels that include the wolf possibly becoming endangered or extinct in Wisconsin.

The study published in the scientific journal PLOS One found it’s more likely than not that a well-regulated hunt would have required placing wolves on the state threatened and endangered species list. Researchers concluded a repeat of the February wolf hunt, during which hunters killed 218 wolves in less than three days, risked extirpation of wolves statewide except on tribal reservations.

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