Three Toes of Harding County

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Clyde F. Briggs stands over Three Toes of Harding County Three toes of Harding County.jpg
Clyde F. Briggs stands over Three Toes of Harding County

Three Toes of Harding County was the nickname given to a solitary North American male Great Plains wolf who killed livestock at ranches in Harding County, South Dakota, over a thirteen-year period in the early 20th century. His hunting range extended into southwestern North Dakota and south eastern Montana. [1]

Great Plains wolf subspecies of mammal

The Great Plains wolf, also known as the buffalo wolf or loafer, is an extinct subspecies of gray wolf with a distribution that once extended throughout the Great Plains from southern Manitoba and Saskatchewan southward to northern Texas. The subspecies was declared extinct in 1926. They were described as a large, light-colored wolf but with black and white varying between individual wolves, with some all white or all black. The Native Americans of North Dakota told of how only three of these wolves could bring down any sized buffalo.

Ranch Area of land used for raising grazing livestock

A ranch is an area of land, including various structures, given primarily to the practice of ranching, the practice of raising grazing livestock such as cattle or sheep for meat or wool. The word most often applies to livestock-raising operations in Mexico, the Western United States and Western Canada, though there are ranches in other areas. People who own or operate a ranch are called ranchers, cattlemen, or stockgrowers. Ranching is also a method used to raise less common livestock such as elk, American bison or even ostrich, emu, and alpaca.

Harding County, South Dakota County in the United States

Harding County is a county in the U.S. state of South Dakota. As of the 2010 United States Census, the population was 1,255, making it the second-least populous county in South Dakota. Its county seat is Buffalo.

Three Toes began his depredations in 1912, becoming a fully fledged livestock killer by 1917. [1] He was estimated to have killed $50,000 worth of livestock in his thirteen-year career. [2] He is known to have killed 66 sheep in two nights shortly before his capture. [2] He was pursued by over 150 men, only to be trapped on July 23, 1925, in the Kahoun pasture, near Gallup, South Dakota, by Clyde F. Briggs, the state deputy predatory animal inspector.

Three Toes was initially planned to be taken to Buffalo alive, though he died prematurely. He was thought to have been 20 years old, and measured 6 feet in length and weighed between 75 and 80 pounds. [1]

Buffalo County, South Dakota County in the United States

Buffalo County is a county in the U.S. state of South Dakota. As of the 2010 United States Census, the population was 1,912. Its county seat is Gann Valley which, at 14 people, is the least populous county seat in the United States. The county was created in 1864, and was organized in 1871 as part of the Dakota Territory.

See also

Lobo the King of Currumpaw short story by Ernest Thompson Seton

"Lobo the King of Currumpaw" is the first story of author Ernest Thompson Seton's 1898 book Wild Animals I Have Known. Seton based the book on his experience hunting wolves in the Southwestern United States.

Surplus killing animal and human behavior

Surplus killing, also known as excessive killing and henhouse syndrome, is a common behavior exhibited by predators, in which they kill more prey than they can immediately eat and then they either cache or they abandon the remainder. The term was invented by Dutch biologist Hans Kruuk after studying spotted hyenas in Africa and red foxes in England. Some of the animals which have been observed engaging in surplus killing include zooplankton, damselfly naiads, predaceous mites, martens, weasels, honey badgers, wolves, orcas, red foxes, leopards, lions, spotted hyenas, spiders, brown bears, American black bears, and polar bears, coyotes, lynx, mink, raccoons, dogs, and house cats.

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  1. 1 2 3 "Elsie McDonell (Mrs. Fred Dahl) Primary Teacher 1911-16, 1918-19" . Retrieved 2008-07-30.
  2. 1 2 "THE WOLF: MYTH, LEGEND & MISCONCEPTION". T. R. Mader. Abundant Wildlife Society. Retrieved 2008-07-30.
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