For the Metro Wire
One of the most popular specimens on display at the Museum of Natural History at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point has been stolen. The timber wolf mount was likely taken between May 12 and 13.
“It was a hugely popular mount. Audiences of all ages were fascinated by it. Almost every day people took their pictures with the wolf,” said Museum Director Ray Reser. He obtained the wolf in 2011 from the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources after it was hit by a car in Shawano County.
Please contact the UW-Stevens Point Police Department at 715-346-3456 with any information about this theft.
“Our goal is the safe return of the wolf undamaged,” Chief Tony Babl said.
To remain anonymous and be eligible for a cash reward, contact Portage County Crime Stoppers by calling toll-free at (888) 346-6600, or text “Tip 1301″ plus your tip to 274637 (CRIMES).
The wolf mount is about 4.5 feet tall, on a 4 x 2-foot base. The museum is located inside Albertson Hall, which also houses the UW-Stevens Point library and a computer lab.
Visitors were captivated by the eyes, large front feet and overall size of this iconic Wisconsin species, Reser said.
“It is no exaggeration that thousands of visitors have viewed or had photos taken with this mount since 2012.”
“It can be a very long wait to get an adult wolf in exceptional condition,” Reser said. Local business owners covered the $2,100 cost to have the animal mounted on a rolling base so it could be used for public outreach and education on campus and at events across Portage and Marathon Counties.
The estimated replacement cost is $3,000, and would require another Wisconsin Endangered and Threatened Species Permit application should another wolf become available, Reser said.