Outdoors

Study: Elk rebounding in Bitterroot Valley

After placing an electronic collar around the neck of a cow elk, biologists work to take other samples before the animal awakens during a recent elk capturing operation in the southern Bitterroot Valley. Biologists will begin fanning out across the region to begin gathering information about mountain lions as part of three year study. (Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks)
After placing an electronic collar around the neck of a cow elk, biologists work to take other samples before the animal awakens during a recent elk capturing operation in the southern Bitterroot Valley. Biologists will begin fanning out across the region to begin gathering information about mountain lions as part of three year study. (Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks)

WILDLIFE — Elk numbers in Montana's Bitterroot Valley are up this year mostly because of better calf survival, according to reseachers.

This year’s aerial spring count found 7,373 elk in the five hunting districts that encircle the Bitterroot Valley. That's the fourth highest number of elk spotted by biologists in the 48-year history of the annual spring survey.

Range conditions and more emphasis on controlling wolves, cougars and bears played a roll in the increase, biologists say.

Read the story in the Ravalli Republic.




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Rich Landers

Rich Landers’ Outdoors blog


Rich Landers writes and photographs stories for a wide range of outdoors coverage, including a Sunday feature section and a Thursday column. He also writes the Outdoors Blog.


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