The B.C. Conservation Officer Service has confirmed that the lone wolf who lived on Discovery Island for six years, Takaya, was shot and killed by a hunter earlier this week.
The COS said in a statement that the wolf was killed on Tuesday, March 24th near the Shawnigan Lake area, which is around 50 kilometres away from where it was released in late January.
Earlier in January, Takaya spotted walking down the street in James Bay.
After this, Conservation Officers released the wolf in the rugged and remote wilderness outside of Port Renfrew, on the west coast of Vancouver Island.
This habitat was chosen due to its similarities to Discovery Island, and to give the wolf the best chance possible at survival.
The decision was made in consultation with biologists from the Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development (FLNRORD), as well as the Provincial Wildlife Veterinarian.
“We understand many British Columbians and people around the world shared care and concern for the well-being of this wolf and this update will affect many people,” said the COS in their statement.
Cheryl Alexander, a local photographer who had documented the life of Takaya says she is “beyond devastated” to learn the wolf was killed by hunters and that “the hunting of wolves and all trophy hunting must stop now.”
I am beyond devastated. And I do not want to share with you this very sad news because Takaya was giving so much hope…
According to COS officers, an investigation is ongoing and further details will be released as they become available.