LANSING, Mich. (Michigan News Source) – A Michigan hunter reported he’d harvested a rather large animal during a legal coyote hunt in January, only to have genetic tests reveal the animal is an 84 pound gray wolf.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources reports Michigan’s known wolf population is located in the Upper Peninsula.

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The department says it continues to be on the lookout for wolves in the Lower Peninsula but has found only a few signs of wolf presence there since the state’s wolf population became reestablished in the 1980s.

The DNR is investigating why a wolf would be that far south in Calhoun County.

“This is an unusual case, and the DNR is actively delving into the matter to learn more about this particular animal’s origin,” said Brian Roell, large carnivore specialist for the DNR. “While rare, instances of wolves traversing vast distances have been documented, including signs of wolves in recent decades in Michigan’s Lower Peninsula.”

Wolves in Michigan are currently a federally endangered species and can only be killed if they are a direct and immediate threat to human life.