Stuck elk could use some wildlife-friendly fencing

JACKSON HOLE, WYO – Here’s something you don’t see every day. Last Tuesday morning, a cow elk found herself sandwiched between two separate fences in a Jackson backyard.

Luckily, a neighbor noticed the elk’s predicament and notified Wyoming Game and Fish Department. Biologist Aly Courtemanch performed the rescue operation, cutting through the mesh wire to free the terrified critter.

Game & Fish biologist Aly Courtemanch was finally able to free the frightened young cow elk after it had become wedged between fences on private property. (JHWF)

“She was so wedged she couldn’t move forward or back,” Courtemanch noted.

GPS collar data shows that moose, elk, and deer navigate through residential areas routinely, and they may cross many dozens of fences each day. It’s easy to overlook the degree to which seemingly benign human structures can impact wildlife movements. But stop for a moment and think about wildlife movement in your residential area.

How could your property and neighborhood be more wildlife-friendly? Do animals have an escape route if they make it into your yard or subdivision?

Read more about how you can create wildlife-friendly fencing on your property.

Jackson Hole Wildlife Foundation pointed out in its January 2019 newsletter: As mature cow elk are known to be the directors of migrations, perhaps we should hope this particular animal isn’t drafted into a herd leadership position any time soon.

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