MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Applications for Minnesota wolf hunting and trapping licenses have dropped by almost half this year.

Last year was the Minnesota's first wolf hunt since the animals came off the endangered list. About 23,500 hunters and trappers applied for licenses. Dan Stark of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources says the number dropped to about 13,000 this year.

Stark said several factors might have contributed. He says there was some novelty last year for the first season, there are fewer licenses available this year, and the success rate for wolf hunters and trappers was low last year.

A total of 3,300 licenses were available this year, down from 6,000 last year. The target harvest is 220 wolves, down from 400 last year when 413 were taken.