The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reported that at least 50 wolves were killed on the opening weekend of the state's first managed wolf hunt.
That total, listed on the DNR website as of 8:30 p.m. Sunday, included 22 wolves in the DNR's northeast hunting zone -- including most of the Northland -- as well as 20 in northwestern Minnesota.
Hunters in Minnesota's east-central zone took at least eight wolves over the weekend, just one shy of the DNR's target of nine for that zone this season. Because of that, the DNR announced that wolf hunting in the east-central zone, which includes parts of Carlton, Pine and Aitkin counties, will close at the end of shooting hours today. There is a total quota of 200 wolves for the early hunting season, which opened Saturday and continues until Nov. 18 or until the quota is met.
A second wolf hunting season, along with a trapping season, will begin Nov. 24 and continue through Jan. 31. That harvest also will be capped at 200 wolves.
The DNR issued 3,600 licenses for the early season; 2,400 are available for the late season.
Minnesota's wolf population is estimated at 3,000.
Wisconsin wolf hunt
As of Sunday, Wisconsin hunters and trappers had taken 57 wolves in the wolf season that opened Oct. 15. The season will continue through Feb. 28 or until the harvest quota of 116 is reached. A total of 727 resident and six nonresident wolf licenses were sold. Wisconsin's wolf population is estimated at 850.