Elk NetworkOregon Elk Hunter Shoots Wolf in Self-Defense

General | November 8, 2023

Below is a news release from the Oregon State Police Fish & Wildlife Division.

On the morning of November 2, 2023, an elk hunter called ODFW (Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife) to report shooting and killing a wolf in self-defense in the North Malheur Hunt Unit. ODFW immediately contacted OSP Fish and Wildlife troopers. An OSP Fish and Wildlife Division sergeant, Fish and Wildlife senior trooper and the district biologist from ODFW responded to the scene and met the hunter. The hunter properly followed instructions and left the scene intact. The hunter then voluntarily led OSP and ODFW to the scene on USFS property, southeast of Seneca, Oregon.

The preliminary investigation revealed the elk hunter was tracking elk on a ridge when a wolf came out from the timber in front of him. The hunter stated he yelled at the wolf and waved his arms in an effort to scare the wolf away. The wolf then reportedly looked at the hunter from a distance of approximately 30 yards and started coming directly toward the hunter.

The hunter stated he feared for his safety and fired one round, striking the wolf and killing it instantly. The approximate distance from the hunter’s location to the wolf carcass was 18 yards. The hunter reported that after shooting the wolf, a second wolf came out of the timber and the hunter shot one time in the air and the wolf fled.

A report will be submitted to the Grant County District Attorney’s Office for review. Preliminary investigation revealed the hunter acted reasonably in shooting the wolf for personal safety and appropriately notified officials immediately upon shooting the wolf.

(Photo credit: Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife)