The Fish and Wildlife Service said Monday an investigation concluded the hunter didn't intend to kill a wolf.
Officials say the hunter was legally hunting coyotes when he shot the wolf on April 29 near Kremmling in northwestern Colorado. When he realized the animal might be a wolf, he turned it over to Colorado Parks and Wildlife. DNA testing confirmed it was a wolf.
Most gray wolves live in Idaho, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, Wyoming and Wisconsin, but they're known to wander thousands of miles.
Fish and Wildlife Service spokesman Steve Segin says the Kremmling wolf had no collar and officials don't know where it came from.