Dozens of cattle have been mysteriously slaughtered in Colorado
Dozens of cattle in Colorado have been slaughtered in the past two months by an elusive predator that has left no tracks.
In October, 18 dead cows were found just outside the town of Meeker. Some looked like they had been killed by wolves, but Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials found no wolf tracks or evidence of the predator in the area.
At least 40 calves have died in the two months that local wildlife experts have been looking for a culprit.
The rancher who lost those calves, Jerry Klinglesmith, wrote in The Fence Post that what he believes may have happened.
“The most likely scenario would be the following: an apparent dog attack may have triggered the onset of an as-yet-undetermined cause of death,” Klingelesmith wrote.
Klingelesmith, along with veterinarians, Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials and other experts, continue to investigate the cause of death. While the case remains largely a mystery, a new theory has emerged that has nothing to do with wolves.
Both Klinglesmith and Colorado Parks and Wildlife Northwest Region Manager Travis Black say the cows may also have been infected with black leg, a disease caused by the Clostridium bacterium, The Coloradoan reported.
Pathological results have not yet confirmed whether this was the cause of death.
After raising the possibility it could be caused by the disease during a Nov. 17 meeting of the state wildlife commission, Black said a “handful” of calves suffered injuries consistent with a wolf attack. Some had missing tails and markings consistent with canine teeth.
While cows can develop a variety of diseases, it remains unclear if Klingelesmith’s cattle had any health problems. According to Black, an attack by dogs or wolves would have exacerbated any health problems within the herd.
Officials have used aerial flights, howling surveys and wildlife cameras to search for wolves and wolf tracks to no avail. There have been no confirmed reports of wolves in the area, only unconfirmed sightings, leaving officials confused and desperate for an answer.
“We have no evidence that wolves were in the area, but that doesn’t mean they weren’t there,” Black said. “Right now we don’t have a solid answer as to what happened.”
https://nypost.com/2022/11/30/dozens-of-cattle-slaughtered-mysteriously-in-colorado/ Dozens of cattle have been mysteriously slaughtered in Colorado