Big Bad Wolves Kill 176 Sheep, Eat 1


Billie Siddoway, whose brother, J.C. Siddoway, runs sheep near Fogg Hill, posted this warning about the wolf kill Saturday at the trailheads of Pole Canyon and Fourth of July trails.


Posted: Monday, August 19, 2013 10:25 am | Updated: 4:38 pm, Mon Aug 19, 2013.

Ken Levy/TVN Staff | 0 comments

U.S. Forest Service officials are asking people to stay out of an area where a large sheep kill was reported over the weekend.

Jay Pence, Teton Basin District ranger, said the sheep kill could attract a lot of people hoping to see predators coming to feed on the carcasses.

Ranchers and others are trying to deal with the situation, and visitors can hamper their activities.

“There are a lot more fun things to look at than dead sheep,” said Pence.

Idaho Wildlife Services confirmed Monday that 176 sheep were killed during a wolf attack near Fogg Hill and the Pole Canyon area early Saturday morning.

The animals belonged to the Siddoway Sheep Company and were grazing in the area about six miles south of Victor, according to a release from Siddoway. The attack, they said, occurred around 1 a.m.

Todd Grimm, director of the Wildlife Services Program, said his office confirmed the depredation Sunday. Many of the animals died from suffocation, since some apparently fell in front of the rest, resulting in a large pile-up.

“This was a rather unique situation,” said Grimm. “Most of the time they don’t pile up like this, but the wolves got them running.”

Only one animal seems to have been eaten in the attack, according to the Siddoway release.

“The sheep are not fenced,” said Billie Siddoway, in an email interview. “They move every few days to a new pasture within a designated area. The sheep are herded and monitored by two full-time herders, four herding dogs and at least four guard dogs.”

Grimm said there is already a “control action” in the area. Since July 3, 12 wolves have been lethally trapped, including nine pups. The goal is to take them all, he said.

“We expect that bears and other scavengers will soon locate the kill site,” said Billie Siddoway.

See the Teton Valley News Aug. 22 for the complete story.

10 thoughts on “Big Bad Wolves Kill 176 Sheep, Eat 1”

  1. Recently “Wolves in Russia” author Will Graves has been communicating with a professor of Veterinary Epidemiology in Kazakhstan regarding wolf diseases and uncovered some potential threats we must be prepared for here in Idaho. What we have learned and is very disturbing is that 20% of the dogs in rural Kazakhstan have been infected with E.G. and this is based on only 19.5% of the Kazakhstan wolves being tested positive for E.G.

    In comparison to Idaho, nearly 100% of Idaho’s recent wolf necropsies tested positive for E.G. but how many of our dogs have E.G. or have even been tested?????
    Just in the Salmon, Idaho valley alone, Idaho For Wildlife has sent in 11 wolves for testing and 100% of the necropsies tested positive for E.G.!

    Our concern is many human’s may be infected in Rural parts of Idaho in high wolf density regions and may not even know it!

    We have a web page devoted to wolf diseases, (See below) and we are going to prepare an information process on how to get rural dogs tested for E.G.

    Due to all of the work that our Salmon IFW chapter Chairman Shane McAfee has conducted on wolf testing, the Idaho Dept of health & Welfare is very concerned with the results. Shane has submitted so many wolf samples to the University of Colorado that they now are doing these tests for free as they are so concerned with what they are seeing in Idaho. IDFG continues to down play this disease threat but based on worldwide scientific research and information gathering we feel this is a great threat for the future of Rural Idaho. Unfortunately we were correct on what wolves were going to do to Idaho’s back country elk population in spite of IDFG’s rhetoric that we were wrong and we have no reason to believe the disease issue will be any differently.

    Dear Mr Graves,

    Thank you for your interest in our article. However I know little about wolves, other than there are lots of them in Kazakhstan. The primary interest was really in the parasites – especially Echinococcus granulosus. E. granulosus is a very serious zoonosis and in rural areas of Kazakhstan infects about 20% of dogs. It then transmits to people through close contact with dogs causing hydatid disease which is a large cystic lesion in your liver of lungs. The parasite naturally circulates between sheep and dogs. However the parasite almost certainly originated in wild life, probably circulating between wolves and wild ungulates. Man has been getting this disease ever since dogs were domesticated. I work with several scientists in Kazakhstan and the material for the manuscript was supplied by local hunters. In many areas wolves are considered a pest and a danger to livestock, especially as there are so many in Kazakhstan.

    All the best

    Prof. Dr. P. R. Torgerson
    PhD, VetMB, DipECVPH
    Professor of Veterinary Epidemiology
    Vetsuisse Faculty
    Winterthurestrasse 270
    8057 Zurich

    • Steve: This is why we need more than 15 comments to show at a time on our blog homepage — I (and probably several others), entirely missed your comment in all of the discussion on wildfires yesterday.

      The introduction of “new” species into an ecosystem (including those that had been extirpated for many generations) carries many risks, other than simple predator-prey relationships. This problem isn’t limited to just wolves — in the 1800s native Port Orford cedars were exported to many areas of the world because of their beauty and became a favored landscape tree, with nurserymen developing over 100 ornamental varieties. At some point these plants encountered a fatal root rot disease that was introduced into Oregon via the purchase and planting of such ornamentals. Oregon’s native populations have been dying off and have been seriously threatened ever since. There are similar examples with fish and sheep and many other plants and animals (including people in North America).

      What is the address of your website for those that are following the wolf issue?

    • Domestic cats and dogs and pigs and cattle and …. also carry diseases. Why should we accept the risk from non-native cats and dogs, and be so intolerant of similar risks posed by native wildlife?

      • Tree

        “Why should we accept the risk from non-native cats and dogs, and be so intolerant of similar risks posed by native wildlife?”

        Because we are all about risk reduction and because we can control our pets if we want to.

  2. Have we forgotten why we got rid of wolves! Theodore Rossevelt wrote in 1895 that ” a single wolf has been known to kill a hundred sheep in a night, it would seem that this indiscriminate slaughter was more to satisfy his malignity than his hunger.”

    “When a pack of these nocturnal marauders come across an unprotected flock of sheep, a sanguinary massacre occurs, and not until they have killed, torn or mangled the entire flock will they return to the mountains. Thus the wolves become a scourge, and their depredations upon herds of sheep and cattle cause no inconsiderable loss to the rancher. They frequently plunder for days and nights together. I am not prepared to state whether it is owing to daintiness of appetite or pure love of killing, but as it is a fact that a single wolf has been known to kill a hundred sheep in a night, it would seem that this indiscriminate slaughter was more to satisfy his malignity than his hunger.”


  3. BBW, I agree.. I detest misleading headlines and think the story needs more info.. they were guarded. what went wrong? I thought the story said more info would be published tomorrow.


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