Elk NetworkIdaho Biologists Begin Wildlife Captures for Multi-year Projects

General | January 6, 2021

Below is a news release from the Idaho Department of Fish and Game. The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation is providing funding support in this effort.

Wildlife capture work will begin early January in the Panhandle and Clearwater Regions among game units 1, 6, and 10A. Idaho Fish and Game is continuing to monitor and capture animals as part of a large multi-year research project to better understand how various management activities, such as harvest levels, influence big game interactions. Research efforts will provide data related to vital rates and habitat use for white-tailed deer, mule deer, elk, moose, mountain lions, black bears and wolves.

Most animals will be captured from ground traps and fitted with satellite GPS collars. Some animals, like moose and elk will be darted and captured using helicopters. We will use the collared animals to understand year-round survival and cause of mortality of adult animals, monitor their offspring’s survival from birth through the remainder of the year, and continue to develop new methods of monitoring populations with remote cameras.

If people see Fish and Game vehicles parked in these units, please give crews the needed space and time to completed the capture efforts and return to their vehicle. Fish and Game crews want to minimize the amount of time captured animals are exposed to humans, therefore they attempt to work quietly and quickly, release the animal on site, and vacate the area as soon as possible to minimize stress on the animal.

Please do not disturb traps or deer in traps if you find them. If you happen to find a collar, please contact your local Fish and Game office to return it.

(Photo source: Idaho Department of Fish and Game)