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North Idaho elk trend: more success, less pressure

Elk hunter Scott Ricks admires his 5 X 5 bull elk, in the back of his truck, at an Idaho Game and Fish check station near the North Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River in 2011.  Ricks bagged his prize shortly after 7 a.m. (FILE The Spokesman-Review)
Elk hunter Scott Ricks admires his 5 X 5 bull elk, in the back of his truck, at an Idaho Game and Fish check station near the North Fork of the Coeur d'Alene River in 2011. Ricks bagged his prize shortly after 7 a.m. (FILE The Spokesman-Review)

HUNTING -- Check station results indicate slightly more elk are being taken by a slightly smaller number of hunters this year in the Idaho Panhandle.

"In VERY general terms, bull elk success rates are looking decent at both check stations (Enaville and St. Maries), and hunter participation has been declining through both stations since about 1992," said Jim Hayden, Idaho Fish and Game regional wildlife manager.

Hayden says check stations are just one snapshot wildlfie biologists use for gauging wildlife populations. Because of the variables associated with check station results, he prefers the mid-winter aerial surveys for getting the best numbers on big-game populations.



Rich Landers
Rich Landers joined The Spokesman-Review in 1977. He is the Outdoors editor for the Sports Department writing and photographing stories about hiking, hunting, fishing, boating, conservation, nature and wildlife and related topics.

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