Published November 26, 2012, 01:00 AM

At least 17 wolves taken so far in late wolf season in Minnesota

Hunters and trappers took at least 17 wolves during the opening weekend of Minnesota’s late wolf season, which opened Saturday.

By: News Tribune staff, Duluth News Tribune

Hunters and trappers took at least 15 wolves during the opening weekend of Minnesota’s late wolf season, which opened Saturday.

There is a statewide quota of 253 wolves for the season, which runs until Jan. 31 and follows an early hunting season earlier this month. A total of 2,400 licenses were available for the late season.

As of Sunday evening, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reported that hunters and trappers took seven wolves in the Northeast Zone, where the season quota is 56, and 10 wolves in the Northwest Zone, where the season quota is 187. No wolves were reported killed in the state’s East-Central Zone.

The statewide total was a marked decrease from the opening weekend of the early hunting season, when at least 50 wolves were killed. The opening of the early season coincided with the state’s firearms deer season, so many more hunters were in the woods.

Minnesota’s wolf season has been controversial, and two groups were unsuccessful in legal efforts to stop the hunt. DNR officials estimate that 3,000 wolves roam the state.

In Wisconsin’s wolf hunt, hunters and trappers had taken 95 wolves through Sunday. The Wisconsin season opened Oct. 15 and continues through Feb. 28 or until the statewide quota of 116 is reached.

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