The tire that had been wrapped around the neck of an elk bull for more than two years was finally removed from the animal in Colorado. This small animal was liberated from the burden it was literally carrying thanks to some wildlife officials.
The 4-year-old elk, which weighs about 270 kilos, was discovered by Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) personnel during a wildlife census in the Mount Evans Wilderness in July 2019. Moose is released from a tire he had been carrying for over two years.
They have since made many attempts to apprehend the bull elk, but it has always managed to escape. Wildlife officer Scott Murdoch offered the following comment:
“These elk become more ferocious the furthest they are from people. That most certainly was successful in recent years. It was challenging to locate and approach this elk. After searching for the small animal for a number of years, the right situation eventually allowed them to capture it. The tire was successfully removed after officers used a tranquilizer shot to bring the moose to a stop.
The fact that some people claimed to have seen it in the Pine Junction region made this plausible.
“I was able to react right away when a local citizen called to report seeing this male elk in his area recently. The bull in question and a group of around 40 other elk were both found by me, according to wildlife officer Dawson Swanson. Swanson delivered the shot, tranquilized him, and then, with Murdoch’s assistance, removed the tire.
“Removing the tire proved to be challenging. We couldn’t cut through the steel in the tire, so we had to move it properly to get it off.
Unfortunately, a band of steel that was attached to the tire made it impossible for the officers to cut it, so they were forced to remove the elk’s antlers in order to remove it from over his head.
Even though they worried he could have been hurt, the elk recovered quickly and was soon up again. Murdoch emphasized:
The situation was urgent, so we had to get rid of the tire in any manner we could, even though we would have preferred to cut it and let the antlers continue their rutting activity.
During the rut, moose use their antlers to fight other males and assert their dominance, which gives them the right to mate with females.
Fortunately, male elk grow antlers every year before mating season, so even though this elk won’t find a spouse this year, he will have another opportunity the next year. The elk might have become trapped in the tire when it was a fawn, before it developed antlers, or in the winter, after it had shed them.
Officials estimate that the elk dropped 16 kilograms once the tire and antlers were removed, with the tire’s added weight of pine needles and soil.
Considering how long the elk carried the tire around its neck, it is incredible that it did not sustain any serious injuries. When the tire was removed, they were shocked to discover that there had been little noticeable harm. Regarding this, Murdoch said:
He had a minor open wound, perhaps the size of a nickel or quarter, and his coat was slightly ripped, but other than that, he appeared to be in good health. In fact, I was pleasantly pleased by how good it appeared.
We’re relieved to learn that the elk has rejoined his herd without the burden that had been dragging him down for so long. Thanks to the amazing work of kind neighbors and wildlife authorities, he is currently feeling better than ever.
Small animals are frequently caught in objects produced by humans. We must be conscious of the fact that there is wildlife on the globe that we must respect and protect. It is everyone’s obligation to take care of it.