Black River Falls elk herd grows with Kentucky animals

Elk cow with calf. Photo courtesty of the Wisconsin DNR

Kentucky’s contribution to Wisconsin’s elk program continued this week when the DNR released 50 elk in Jackson County  near Black River Falls.

Wisconsin personnel traveled to Kentucky for the second winter to trap elk for transport back to the Badger State. They returned home with 39 elk and that number grew to 50 as calves were born in the holding pen.

“The second year of Jackson County elk reintroduction efforts has been exceptional with the arrival of several new calves born in the pen,” said Kevin Wallenfang, DNR elk ecologist and elk reintroduction coordinator. “We have wrapped up our efforts here in Jackson County with the release of the second herd. We’ll now focus the next two to three years on adding animals to the northern herd.”

Last year, 23 Kentucky elk were moved to Wisconsin; 13 of those elk remain alive and at least one wild birth has been confirmed from those animals, said Wallenfang.

That puts the Black River Falls herd at 63 animals.

The northern herd, mostly centered around Clam Lake, began in 1995 with the release of 25 elk from Michigan. That herd is now at about 165 elk, including an expected 35 calves from this spring, said Wallenfang.

Categories: Bloggers on Hunting, Hunting News, Wisconsin – Dean Bortz

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