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So I just found out we have an endangered species in our region called a red wolf. My wife calls me from the road by our house and tells me to put the pets up, that there's a wolf on the road. I laughed and said its just a coyote or someone's domestic dog. So I did some research and found out sure enough we have a species of wolf here. She was absolutely adamant it was not a coyote and not a domestic dog.

Anyway I recalled photographing the biggest coyote I've ever seen in my life in my yard last fall. I dug up the old photo and compared it to red wolf photos online. I'm undecided as to what I really took a picture of. Any experts? The white around the eyes and face look exactly like the red wolf image on Wikipedia.
 

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Red Wolf

A retired forester friend, who spent his career in the woods, told me he was deer hunting near Waynesboro, MS several years ago on some family property when he saw what he believed to be a red wolf. I questioned him at some length suspecting he had seen a large coyote. He indicated he had seen many coyotes throughout his career and could readily identify them. What he saw on that day, having plenty of time to study the animal, he said was not a large coyote, but a wolf instead, believing it to be a red wolf. I've known him for a long time and if he tells you something you can take it to the bank. Was he mistaken? Possibly, but he thinks not.
 

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My Grandfather and I were quail hunting many years ago now and saw a very large dog. I said yote he said Red Wolf. I took him for the gospel.
 

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I've caught 2 or 3 coyotes a good bit larger than the average Mississippi coyote. I'd swear they had some wolf in them. If Photobucket hadn't turned in to a money hoe I'd post a couple pictures of them. They look much more like the one called a Red Wolf in the Wikipedia link above. They were all much more aggressive than the average coyote too.
 

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So I just found out we have an endangered species in our region called a red wolf. My wife calls me from the road by our house and tells me to put the pets up, that there's a wolf on the road. I laughed and said its just a coyote or someone's domestic dog. So I did some research and found out sure enough we have a species of wolf here. She was absolutely adamant it was not a coyote and not a domestic dog.

Anyway I recalled photographing the biggest coyote I've ever seen in my life in my yard last fall. I dug up the old photo and compared it to red wolf photos online. I'm undecided as to what I really took a picture of. Any experts? The white around the eyes and face look exactly like the red wolf image on Wikipedia.
Coyote

Red Wolves have been transplanted into some remote areas across the southeast as breeding pairs, but those locations were specifically selected to limit their interaction with coyotes and people. In areas already heavily populated with coyotes red wolves are rapidly displaced. Further, interbreeding with coyotes further dilutes the gene pool.

I have trapped and transferred red wolves as part of the interagency recovery team, and distinguishing them from a coyote is difficult up close, let alone at a distance. Thus when looking at a large wild canid in Mississippi you option is to decide "am I seeing one of the million+ coyotes running around, or is that one of the 100 or so red wolves left in the US?"
 

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Coyote

Red Wolves have been transplanted into some remote areas across the southeast as breeding pairs, but those locations were specifically selected to limit their interaction with coyotes and people. In areas already heavily populated with coyotes red wolves are rapidly displaced. Further, interbreeding with coyotes further dilutes the gene pool.

I have trapped and transferred red wolves as part of the interagency recovery team, and distinguishing them from a coyote is difficult up close, let alone at a distance. Thus when looking at a large wild canid in Mississippi you option is to decide "am I seeing one of the million+ coyotes running around, or is that one of the 100 or so red wolves left in the US?"
See your point. Odds are definitely not in your favor to see one.
 

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I've got a Workmens Comp Doctors statement I saved from years ago that lists "wolf bite to left wrist" as my injury.

Not something you see every day. We were live trapping tagged red wolves at a breeding facility to be relocated and weren't allowed to tranquilize them (too much risk). So we would rope and net them, then someone had to release them from the trap. I was releasing one day and let my hand get a little too close.
 

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I've got a Workmens Comp Doctors statement I saved from years ago that lists "wolf bite to left wrist" as my injury.

Not something you see every day. We were live trapping tagged red wolves at a breeding facility to be relocated and weren't allowed to tranquilize them (too much risk). So we would rope and net them, then someone had to release them from the trap. I was releasing one day and let my hand get a little too close.
It would be interesting to see some pics of the wolves. Do you have any you could post from the trapping and relocating days?
Here's a couple of the biggest I've ever caught.



 

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Buddy of mine spotted on and heard him howl in port Gibson at our camp. That it was big coyote at first. Couldn’t get shot on him then at dark heard him howl. There is actually a place in north Mississippi that was a sanctuary for them. You can google red wolf in Mississippi
 

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Buddy of mine spotted on and heard him howl in port Gibson at our camp. That it was big coyote at first. Couldn't get shot on him then at dark heard him howl. There is actually a place in north Mississippi that was a sanctuary for them. You can google red wolf in Mississippi
The likelihood of a red wolf being in MS (outside of a zoo) is about as likely as squatch being here. Unfortunately, red wolves are being "bred out" by coyotes and when you compound that with roadway collisions and all the ones shot it proves a tough uphill battle for the species. Dilution of the gene pool has left very few true (genetically pure) red wolves left even at the last stronghold they have at the Alligator River National Wildlife Refuge. Another fun factoid on red wolves were they were briefly re-introduced to a Mississippi Barrier island (Horn Island).
 

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I saw two large wolf-like critters on the creek once a couple of years ago near my parents' house in Han**** county. I can't say as to whether they were wolves or huge coyotes. They appeared to be in the 80-100 lb weight range though.

However, I do believe that at one point there were some wolves in the area of that community. I say that because back before hurricane katrina, when the woods were still composed of more than briar patches and scrub bushes, over the course of several months we kept hearing howls around the community that definitely were not of coyote origin. The most telling thing about it was that when the coyotes would cut up at night the cows wouldn't pay them any attention. But when the supposed wolves would cut loose (which was never at the same time as the coyotes) all the dogs in the area would go berserk and the cows would all spook in the fields, low a lot and huddle in defensive groups. Only thing I can think of to cause that would be that they knew that those weren't coyotes. We identified four distinct howls. After Katrina, they disappeared.
 
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