Mr. & Mrs. Kelly Klumker

Incident Summary

A wolf was seen leaving their yard with one of their black cats in its mouth late Tuesday afternoon, the 18th of January, 2000. There were several eye witnesses of the "limping" wolf fleeing through a rancher's field along Mineral Creek to the west and into the river bed across Hwy 180 approximately 5 miles North of Glenwood in Alma..

The incident was reported to the Fish and Wildlife Service that evening, and two female representatives came to the Klumker residence Wednesday morning to investigate. Mrs. Klumker said the two were going "to look for tracks" in the field and in the area. The Klumkers have not yet received word of the F&WS's findings as of Friday morning (21st).

As stated by the Klumkers, this isn't the first time they've seen a wolf in the area, and several more of their cats have been missing. Mrs. Klumker was more concerned about the well-being of her granddaughter and other children who regularly play in their yard and in the surrounding residential area.

Witness:

One witness stated that her and her little brother saw the animal late Tuesday in the field just right (west) of the Klumker house. She stated, I thought it was a dog at first", but after watching the animal for awhile, they realized it was "much too big and too furry". It didn't move like a dog.

Once the wolf spotted them, she said, "it started to take off, but not real scared-like." The animal kept stopping and looking back as "if to see if they were still watching." Then it treaded off through the field and toward the river.

This witness emphasized her concern for the children in the area. She has friends right around the corner of this sighting with young children. "It's scary," she said.
by Laura Schneberger, Gila Forest Permittees
1-21-00

Alma New Mexico. Georgia Klumker was looking out her kitchen window at five PM Tuesday the 18th of January when she witnessed a wolf attack and kill one of the cats in her yard. The attack was over in a minute and the wolf was gone as quickly as it came, cat and all.

Mrs. Klumker baby-sits her grandchildren on a regular basis and was very relieved that they weren’t in the yard playing that evening.

She called the local Fish and Game employees at the fish hatchery down the road and reported what happened and they in turn called the Fish and Wildlife personnel in charge of the reintroduction. The Fish and Wildlife showed up the next morning to investigate the incident bat as far as Mrs. Klumker knows, they came to no conclusions. She hasn’t heard from them since.

Not willing to frighten her neighbors she kept the incident fairly quiet but because there are many small children in the area who play out in their yards, sometimes unattended, she is quite worried. Neighbor Jodi Faust has decided to keep her children in the house for a while. Other neighbors have seen the wolf hanging around the area but with the Fish and Wildlife personnel having such a hard time trapping the Livestock killing Galvan pack there seems to be no one available to monitor the other wolves in the project.

Fish and Wildlife specialists refuse to admit, wolves have been known to attack humans. However according to the standards for verifying a wolf attack, the person attacked has to die from his wounds. The wolf must be found, caught, examined, and found to be healthy. The wolf must not have been raised in proximity to humans.

Wolves have attacked and even killed human beings in the history of the country. But the standards the agency follows makes a wolf attack on a human nearly impossible to record. This news is not reassuring to people in the Glenwood area, but it is information that they needed to have. The question is, why didn’t the Fish and Wildlife service make sure they knew about the attack on the Klumker’s cat so people could be prepared to keep their children safe?