Are there wolves in Arkansas? Maybe so!
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
Are there wolves in Arkansas? In answer to last week’s editorial by that title, I received a number of replies. It makes me feel a little better knowing that others, too, have seen wolf-like creatures right here in northwest Arkansas.
Kelly Irvin of Gravette wrote:
A friend of mine reported to me what she thought was a wolf she saw one evening when coming home from work. She first thought it was a coyote, but it crossed North Mount Olive Road in a single stride.
Kyle Sarratt of Rogers wrote:
I just read your article about wolves in Arkansas and had to respond. I live in Rogers and drive to Siloam and Gentry to work each day. I go by XNA three days a week but have yet to see anything but deer there. However, one early morning as I was traveling south on Highway 59 between Gentry and Siloam, I looked out at the field on the east side of the road that has all the mounds in it. I saw five coyotes or what I thought was coyotes. They were spread out in a 40-yard radius loping along with their noses to the ground. I assume they were hunting field mice. Odd thing was they seemed too large and bushy to be coyotes and three of them were jet black. I was unable to get turned around to video with my phone but what I saw was amazing. I have lived in this area my entire 47 years, am a fisherman and hunter and have never observed anything like this. Who knows what they were, but it was quite a sight.
I also have video of my dog about seven to eight years ago below our house at Beaver Lake chasing a wolf-looking creature. Sparky was a 90-pound yellow Lab mix, nearlywhite and very furry. He would chase this thing away for 40 yards then turn his back to it and trot back towards our house. This went on for 10 minutes, but the funny thing was, every time Sparky turned his back to the thing, it would stop running away and begin sneaking back towards Sparky. I ran and got a deer rifle, afraid my dog was going to get attacked, but every time Sparky would stop and run back toward the thing, it would run off. It finally wandered away.
Anyway, sorry for the long email, my family and I enjoy the “Finding Bigfoot” show on Animal Planet. I would be curious to know if anyone has had any sightings of this hairy beast in Arkansas.
Glenn Smith of Gentry wrote:
Hey, Randy ... about your comments on the gray wolves in Arkansas. I saw one in my yard about three years ago. I had just stepped out on the deck when I spotted it. I said, “Hey, dog!” He stopped and looked at me, then trotted away. I went out and found his track in the mud. It measured 3 1/2 by 3 1/4 inches.
Then about two years ago, an unconcerned mountain lion trotted in front of my tractor while I was driving it out to the hay barn. His track measured the same as the wolf’s did.
About the same time I saw the mountain lion, one was spotted under a street light in a housing addition just south of Siloam Springs City Lake. About the same time one was also spotted just north of U.S. Highway 412 somewhere near the sod farm. I am told they have a range of about 50 miles.
A few more mysteries
Regarding mountain lions, one night while on patrol back in northwestKansas, I answered a call to a farm at which a number of piglets were killed, though one was still alive. All of them had a large chunk taken out of the back of their necks which looked like something had just taken a big bite out of them. Because we had received reports of cougar sightings in the area, I thought a big cat was the likely culprit. In incidents where coyotes took a farm animal, they were usually chewed up from the backside.
And regarding unidentified flying objects, I did watch a strange object in the sky late one night at the end of my patrol shift. With no street lights and clear skies in northwest Kansas, the number of stars one can watch on any given night is unbelievable. On one night, however, I noticed what appeared to be a very bright star moving in the night sky. Had it moved in one direction, I would have assumed it to be a satellite, but it moved in one direction and then another. When I looked at it through some high-quality military binoculars, it wouldn’t focus down to a point like stars but only to a small oblong, football shape.
What it was, I don’t know.
For some reason, I thought it best not to call in the sighting to dispatch. I don’t believe in space creatures or alien spaceships, so I certainly wasn’t expecting anything to land and unload little green men. If I was, I probably wouldn’t have stayed out there on an empty Kansas road and watched it for a half hour or more. I didn’t get beamed up and my patrol car was not disintegrated by a laser cannon or blaster.
I’ve continued to wonder what I saw. It was a UFO to me but I expect someone knows what I was watching late that night. Could it have been a weather balloon, some military aircraft or was I just tired from a long shift?
Randy Moll is the managing editor of the Westside Eagle Observer. He may be reached by email at email@example.com.
Opinion, Pages 6 on 02/08/2012