Emergency Elk Feeding Begun in Wood River Valley
BELLEVUE (Press Release)– The Idaho Department of Fish and Game has begun feeding elk in four areas across the Wood River Valley in hopes of removing them from roadways, hay stacks and cattle operations.
“It is just one of those years we finally got a normal snowfall. We have a lot of elk in the population and some are getting into trouble,” said Toby Boudreau, Magic Valley Fish and Game Regional Supervisor. “We estimate about 1500 elk that are in places they shouldn’t be. We are hoping the feeding will draw them out of town and ranching operations.”
Residents are asked not to feed elk and stop them from moving onto the Fish and Game feeding areas.
“We know people’s hearts are in the right place and they are doing what they think is best for the wildlife,” Boudreau said. “But in order for our plan to work, we are going to need everyone’s help by not feeding.”
People are also asked not to push or harass when out participating in winter recreation or trying to view them in the new feeding areas.
“Our hope is to keep them near these new feeding areas or on south facing slopes above town on their natural winter range,” Boudreau said. “We have a lot of incidences that elk are where they should be, but when cross-country skiers, people on snowshoes and domestic dogs get to close to the elk, they move to less desirable areas.
“If we can all work together and live by these few simple rules, we will have the best outcome for the elk and the residents of the valley.”