A wolf was hit by a vehicle on the A8 motorway near a busy commercial area of Frejus (Var), said Saturday the National Wildlife Hunting Office (ONCFS),
who had to euthanize the animal on the spot because of his injuries. The accident occurred in the day of Thursday, says the ONCFS whose teams have found, following testimonies, the animal dying in a gutter along the highway,
confirming a Var-Matin information.
An autopsy Friday "confirmed that the animal had the fractured column in the lumbar region and also had internal lesions to the liver and lungs," said AFP Eric Hansen, interregional Paca-Corse delegate of ONCFS. Genetic samples were taken from the animal, a 32-kg male, to determine whether it was in the Agency's database, which lists a number of specimens.
A not-so-amazing presence
"We have in the Paca region, which represents two thirds of the wolf population in France, more and more cases of wolves struck by cars but also by trains", adds Eric Hansen, for whom the presence of wolves in this area This place is not surprising, as Fréjus is located near the Massif des Maures and Estérel.
"In all the forest massifs of the region, one can have passages of wolves, which does not mean that they will settle there," notes this specialist.
By the month of June will be announced the estimate of the number of wolves in France, a decisive figure because it then determines the number of "levies" regulations. In 2018, the quota, set at 12%, was 51 wolves for a total of 430 wolves estimated. According to ONCFS, it should increase significantly as the wolf population is growing rapidly and the government has announced its intention to increase the percentage of wolves collected to 17%.
Rough wolves, unlike poached wolves, do not fall into these quotas.