If all goes as planned, biologists with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department will capture approximately 60 elk in the Bighorn and Owl Creek Mountains during February. The goal is to gain as much information as possible about Brucellosis, an infectious disease that causes elk, bison and cattle to abort their fetuses.
Crews will use helicopters to capture elk with a net gun and then take blood samples and attach a GPS collar. Data will be used to monitor elk herd movements and determine the prevalence and distribution of Brucellosis.
According to a Wyo4News report, none of 600 elk samples submitted by hunters tested positive in the Bighorn Mountains in 2017. Additionally, none of 59 elk captured and collared as part of this effort tested positive.
The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and other partners funded the study.
(Photo source: John Taylor)