December 16, 2016
I have previously done a post about the Saturna Island wolf-dog.
It is dawning on me, maybe for the first time, how scary this wolf-dog must have been for the people of Saturna, as it ran around the island killing one livestock animal after another.
I chalk it up to the side of me that was a cynical journalist(note: the words “cynical” and “journalist” go hand-in-hand, in my opinion) when I was writing these articles. Maybe it is because we deal with so many painful, sad, corrupt and argumentative topics as journalists that we have to laugh or we would constantly be weeping.
Yet, as you will experience when you read the following story, there is something about the whole wolf-dog saga that has the qualities of a tall-tale and tall-tales are meant to entertain:
Gulf Islands Driftwood
April 19, 2000
Saturna ‘wolf-dog’ shot and killed
by Tanya Lester
The “wolf-dog” that has held Saturna residents “in a web of fear with its ever increasing slaughter,” according to Driftwood columnist Gail Trafford, has been killed.
The canine was shot on Samuel Island Sunday morning after it killed sheep on the small island off Saturna, said RCMP Corporal Smawley. The caretaker on the private island and members of the Saturna adhoc “Wolf Watch” conferred with Smawley before shooting the animal.
The RCMP corporal based on the Penders, indicated that the canine was humanely disposed of by a single gunshot.
Smawley and Constable Phillip from Mayne picked up the carcass at the Saturna dock.
“A jubilant air surrounded the government wharf where the carcass was laid out to wait for the RCMP boat,” reported Trafford.
The RCMP took the canine’s remains to Pender Island.
From there, conservation officers transferred it to Victoria where biologists are doing tests to determine whether the animal is, in fact, a wolf, a hybrid or a dog, Smawley said.
Since last August or September, the “wolf-dog” has been responsible for killing a large number of deer, wild goats , at least 15 sheep , a llama and a dog. There have also been a number of injuries to sheep as well as to a pony or horse.
Smawley said it is good that the canine was killed before the Easter weekend, when many tourists are expected on the Gulf Islands. Visitors or their animals may have been hurt if the canine attacked one of their animals, he said.
Recent newspaper publicity helped put more people on the lookout for the canine, he added.
“I highly commend the people on Saturna and the caretaker in the effort they put forth in this situation,” said Smawley.
Both Smawley and Trafford report that some Saturna residents are interested in having the animal’s skin returned to the island for mounting at the community hall.
Smawley said his discussions with conservation officers confirm that this could be possible but permission would probably have to be obtained from the environment ministry.
Residents of Saturna, including the Campbells and other sheep farmers who suffered losses due to the animal’s aggressive attacks, can now return to a more routine farming situation.
“Jacques Campbell was relieved that she will now be able to let her sheep graze in the pasture again without danger, said Trafford. “Other sheep farmers counted their losses and at last breathed a sigh of relief.”
Tanya is also a psychic, specializing in tea leaf reading and tarot, as well as a reiki master and fulltime housitter. For more information go to teareading.wordpress.com or her pages at Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Google. Or contact her directly at email@example.com or call 250-538-0086 cell.