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Fish and Game survey shows declining Lolo elk population

Fish and Game survey shows declining Lolo elk population

Idaho Freedom Foundation staff
March 1, 2010
Idaho Freedom Foundation staff
Author Image
March 1, 2010

New aerial surveys by the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) show that the elk population is declining in the Lolo Elk Management Zone in north central Idaho.  The number of elk in the area dropped 57 percent since 2006. Wolf predation the main source of the declining numbers of elk, according to an IDFG news release.

"This survey, combined with ongoing research showing wolves are the primary cause of elk mortality today, is further scientific evidence of the impact wolves are having," Fish and Game Director Cal Groen said. "The rate of this decline in just four short years should help people understand there is an urgency to manage for a balance in this area."

Idaho lawmakers in favor of lowering Idaho's wolf population and expanding the state's wolf hunt in the future have referenced the declining Lolo elk population in their arguments against wolves. “The hunters are no longer able to hunt in those areas," Sen. Jeff Siddoway, R-Terreton, said on the Senate floor Feb. 4 during a debate on the appointment of a fish and game commissioner.

Read the full news release at the IDFG website.

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