Thursday, 12 February 2015

First gray wolf seen at Grand Canyon in 70 years killed by Utah hunter- UPDATE

Echo, who was spotted near the north rim of the famous Arizona landmark in 2014, was shot by a man who said he mistook her for a coyote

Wednesday 11 February 2015 22.25 GMT

A gray wolf killed last year by a Utah hunter was “Echo”, a female that had garnered international attention after roaming from Wyoming to become the first of the protected animals seen at the Grand Canyon in Arizona in 70 years, US wildlife managers said on Wednesday.

News that the lone wolf spotted last fall near the north rim of the Grand Canyon was the same animal later killed in Utah by a hunter who said he mistook it for a coyote ignited outrage among wildlife advocates.

“It’s tragic that Echo traveled over 500 miles (800km) only to be cut down by an incredibly irresponsible coyote hunter,” said Bethany Cotton, wildlife program director for WildEarth Guardians.

Authorities have not released the name of the coyote hunter, who in December reported to Utah wildlife officers that he had accidentally shot and killed a radio-collared wolf near the border with Arizona.

It is illegal to kill wolves without a special permit in the lower 48 states, where most wolves are protected under the US Endangered Species Act. Wolves in just two states – Idaho and Montana – are not on a federal list of endangered and threatened species and can be legally hunted.

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