Maine Mystery Beast Photo: Is It a Wolf, Coyote, or Something Else?
Social media debate and speculation are running amok over a photo taken in Maine of what looks like a wolf, but might be a coyote or something else.
Mike Tucker of Coventry, Rhode Island, was in Northwestern Maine on a camping trip, and captured a photo of an animal that looked like a dog, wolf, or coyote, but the jury is still out on the matter.
The animal wasn't there for long before it walked back into the woods, and Mike thought it had to be a coyote, but his friend James Prete didn't think so. Mike thought this could be a rare sighting of a young Eastern Wolf here in Maine, so he reached out to some wolf and coyote experts.
Those experts said that it appears to be more wolf-like than coyote, but it's hard for them to give a solid answer without a DNA sample, and that's not going to happen. There's even debate between two experts as to whether it's a wolf or a coyote.
This animal is darker than most wolves, but coyotes are more prone to a condition called melanism, where the animal produces too much melatonin that causes its darker color. However, melanistic coyotes are rare here in the Northeast.
This is one of those puzzles that just doesn't give you a solid answer. What do you think?
Mike says that no matter if it's a wolf or coyote, seeing it was the best experience of his camping trip.