By DICK MASON

LA GRANDE, Ore. (AP) — Wolves are not bloodless killers, but they can appear to be.

Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife biologist Russ Morgan explained why and much more during a recent presentation about wolves at a meeting of the Union/Wallowa county chapter of the Oregon Hunters Association.

Morgan, the ODFW’s wolf program coordinator, pointed out that wolf kills can appear perplexing because often they barely have a scratch. The reason is wolves kill with multiple bites that often do not break an animal’s skin. The bites trigger massive internal bleeding.

“Multiple-bite trauma causes hemorrhaging (internal bleeding) and bruising,” Morgan said.

The hemorrhaging and bruising is apparent when the animal is cut open. This is why when animals suspected of being killed by wolves are examined it is important to conduct an internal exam similar to an autopsy, Morgan said. Such exams help confirm that a wolf killed the animal.

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