Wolf In Missouri: Everything You Need To Know

Last Updated on September 14, 2023 by Amin Tawar

Wolf In Missouri

Missouri is largely dominated by elk, black bears, American bison, and other large cats. The state is also well-known to be ample with sinkholes and caves due to the increased limestone quantity. But, are there wolves present in the Missouri wildlife? 

In this article, I’ve explained all the things you need to know about the Wolves living in Missouri Wildlife.

Are There Wolves In Missouri?

Historically, gray wolves were seen throughout Missouri, but within the early 1900s, they were mostly eradicated because of trapping, hunting, and habitat loss. However, in past years, there have been rare statements on wolf sightings in the state. 

The Missouri Department of Conservation has also received several reports on wolf sightings within the state, but there is no confirmed presence of any resident population of wolves. 

Most sightings are probably of individual wolves that traveled from other neighboring states, like Wisconsin or Minnesota, where the population of wolves is more confirmed. Also, the problem of reintroducing or controlling wolves in Missouri stays a topic of discussion among wildlife experts, conservationists, and local communities.

When Was The Last Wolf In Missouri?

Historically, gray wolves were found throughout Missouri, but because of trapping, hunting, and habitat loss, they declined quickly in the early 1900s, and within the mid-1900s, they were believed extirpated in Missouri.

In 1950, a small female wolf was killed in Taney County and it became the final red wolf on record to be lived in the state of Missouri. Globally, the red wolf population was reported expired in 1980, in the wild, but a captured breeding project has resulted in this species being successfully reintroduced into northeastern North Carolina.

How Big Are Wolves In Missouri?

Wolf In Missouri

An average, adult wolf has a body length of about 50–60 inches, and their tail length is anywhere from 13 to 16 inches long. They generally weigh anywhere between 60 to 110 pounds, with male wolves being bigger larger than female wolves. 

However, wolves can also differ in size depending on their habitat and location, with individuals in southern regions generally being smaller than those in more northern regions.

They are similar to the coyote but larger and robust, with a broader nose pad, relatively coarser fur, a bigger heel pad on the front paw, bigger ears in balance to the head, and slender & longer legs. Their coloration also varies.

Are There Timber Wolves In Missouri?

Timber Wolves, also called Western Gray Wolves, were primarily seen in the western United States such as Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming, and even in the regions of Canada. They are also believed to exist in Missouri but were eliminated by the early 1900s. 

Though there have been rare sightings of them in Missouri, there is no proof to suggest that a resident population of Timber Wolves exists in Missouri. Also, it is necessary to note that Timber Wolves are highly versatile species and can travel for long stretches

Also Check Our Guide On Wolves In New Jersey

Where Can You See Wolves In Missouri?

Spotting wolves in Missouri is very difficult and thus there is no specified or dedicated location to witness wolves in the wild in Missouri, as there is presently no confirmed resident wolf population in the state.

Although there have been unconfirmed occasional sightings of wolves in the wild in Missouri, it is possible that they have traveled from other states. 

Can You Own A Wolf In Missouri?

As per the Missouri State Statute, No person can own any lion, leopard, tiger, jaguar, margay, and other dangerous wild animals including wolves, unless the person has documented the animal with the local statute enforcement. 

They can be kept only in places that are properly maintained scientific & educational institutions, zoological parks, or animal refuges. 

Additionally, wolves can’t be generally kept as pets because of their natural predatory intuitions, and the difficulties in providing care for them. Wolves need a specific diet and habitat which is difficult to deliver in a domestic environment.

Also Check Our Guide On Wolves In US


And that was everything you need to know about the Wolves in Missouri. I hope this article was informative enough and your queries were answered.

Thank You For Reading!

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