Minnesota’s total wolf kill this season, including wolves harvested in the early season, stood at 184 Thursday, 36 shy of the Department of Natural Resources’ target harvest of 220 wolves.

Hunters and trappers have killed 96 wolves in the late season, including 37 in the northeast zone, where the harvest quota was 33. The DNR closed that zone Wednesday, and officials aren’t concerned that hunters and trappers exceeded the zone’s target harvest.

“They are not absolute numbers, just targets,’’ said Dan Stark, DNR wolf specialist. “A few wolves over or under [the targets] isn’t critical.’’

So far, 57 wolves have been killed in the northwest zone, where the target quota is 89 wolves. And two wolves have been killed in the east-central zone, where the target is 10 animals.

The late season ends Jan. 31, though it will be closed earlier if quotas are approached, Stark said.

DOUG SMITH