Mysterious wolf-like animal found in Montana
This undated photo provided by the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks on Friday, May 25, 2018, shows a wolf-like animal that was shot on May 16, 2018, after it was spotted in a private pasture with livestock near Denton, Mont. (Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks via AP)
Published Monday, May 28, 2018 7:57AM EDT
Last Updated Monday, May 28, 2018 8:25AM EDT
DENTON, Mont. - A central Montana rancher shot a wolf-like animal after it was spotted in a pasture with livestock, but a closer look prompted state wildlife officials to take DNA samples to determine what type of animal it was.
Fish, Wildlife and Parks regional spokesman Bruce Auchly said the animal's front claws and canine teeth are too short and its ears are too tall in proportion to its skull for it to be a purebred wolf.
The animal was shot on May 16 near Denton.
Wolf management specialist Ty Smucker says the animal could be a wolf-dog hybrid. The DNA tests haven't been returned.
Warden Zach Norris says the rancher was within his rights to kill the animal because it was seen near livestock, domestic dogs and children.