Wildlife officials have announced that an elk who roamed the Colorado hills for over two years with a tire around his neck has been released.
The four-and-a-half-year-old bull elk had to be tranquilised and have its antlers removed, Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) officers said.
This was the fourth time officers made attempts to release the elk within one week.
Scott Murdoch said, “It was tight to remove it,” adding that the neck of the elk had small injuries and was missing some hairs.
Murdoch claimed that “we would have preferred to trim the tyre” and left the antlers to his rutting activities.
According to him, the tire was also full of pine needles and dirt which would make it heavy and difficult to transport.
Murdoch removed the carcass late Saturday night. He said that it was in remarkable condition. “I was quite surprised to see how great it looked,” he added.
Now the story about the bull elk who had a flat tire on its neck is finished. The residents of Pine Junction (CR 126) reported its location to wildlife officers, who were able free the bull elk from that tire on Saturday.
📸Pat Hemstreet – pic.twitter.com/OcnceuZrpk
— CPW NE Region (@CPW_NE) October 11, 2021
In July 2019, wildlife officers discovered the tyre wrapped around the neck of the elk while performing a population survey.
According to officers, the animal was more than 600lb (270 kg) and would roam between Park County’s Jefferson County for several hours. However, it disappeared long enough during winter.
Previous efforts to calm the bull elk had been hampered by wildlife officers being unable to reach them and the presence of other elks nearby. However, the rutting season, or mating, made it possible to do so, said Mr Murdoch.
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