LOGAN, Utah — Utah officials have placed a trap-and-destroy order on an endangered Mexican gray wolf believed to have killed livestock in the state, but conservation groups are calling on state wildlife officials to humanely capture the rare predator and release it into the wild.

Mexican gray wolves were brought back from near-extinction by the Endangered Species Act. A calf was found dead around June 1 on a ranch in northeast Utah, a region where Mexican gray wolves are not on the endangered list.

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From The Leader in Logan, Utah:

Evidence that a wolf killed a calf in the Monte Cristo area southeast of Logan has prompted a state effort to exterminate the animal plus an environmentalist effort to save it.

State trappers were sent out in late May after a rancher reported the livestock loss, and they found bite marks on the calf consistent with those of a wolf, along with other evidence. If their determination is correct, it would be the first confirmed case of a wolf in Utah since November of 2015.

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