SANDPOINT, Idaho (AP) — Officials are investigating the shooting death of a male alpaca at a northern Idaho ranch.

Snowmass Alpacas co-owner Julie Skinner says the alpaca was found dead Wednesday morning, and was believed shot late Tuesday or early Wednesday.

The alpaca was one of the ranch's studs.

The Bonner County Daily Bee reports (http://bit.ly/tvgP2J) Bonner County officials suspect the alpaca was shot from the road by someone who mistook it for an elk.

Skinner says there were tracks leading to the slain animal and at least three sets of footprints in a circle around it.

Snowmass Alpaca has 900 head of the South American camelids on its 700-acre ranch near Sandpoint. It raises the animals for breeding and commercial fiber.

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Information from: Bonner Daily Bee, http://www.bonnercountydailybee.com

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