My third and last Wolf sighting was during the predawn hours of the day following the second sighting. A “kill” of an elk had happened during the night on this ridge and the Junction Butte Wolves were at the kill site feeding on the carcass. The feeding spot was on the hillside where the Wolves had dragged the carcass from the top of the ridge where the kill occurred. A blood trail marked the side of the hill showing where the carcass had been dragged.
In closing out this Yellowstone Wolf photo adventure, I was so glad to have had the opportunity to see, photograph and learn about these remarkable animals. I was also made aware of the decades long debate and controversy surrounding the Wolf. On one side are the ranchers and farmers who see the Wolf as a threat to their livelihood and the hunters and trappers who see the Wolf as a source of income or as simply a pest that needs to be killed or as a trophy to hang on a wall. On the other side are the Wildlife conservationists, the Game Management Wardens and National Park Management whose goal is to protect our wildlife and ensure the health and welfare of the various animal species. Bringing the two sides together has been a long struggle but I understand some progress is being made. One undeniable fact however is that an area like Yellowstone Park needs the Wolf as an Apex Predator because actual Yellowstone history has shown that removing the Wolf brings disastrous results across the spectrum of the area when that balance of Nature is interrupted. Here’s hoping the Wolf will be around for a long time to perform their vital role in Nature and to be admired and appreciated by us.