In 2011, the Department of Conservation started reintroducing elk into the state of Missouri. The elk were brought in from Kentucky and released onto land designated as the Elk Relocation Zone. Part of this “zone” is conservation land in the Missouri Ozarks called Peck Ranch.
Right now, there’s a herd of more than a hundred elk roaming around in the Missouri Ozarks. But, you might not know it just by looking around. You see, they’re actually kind of hard to find in the woods.
The Missouri Department of Conservation is planning to allow Elk hunting starting in 2016.
The Columbia Missourian reports the plan is contingent on the Elk population growing to at least 200. The conservation department has been working on growing the Elk population since 2010. The Department been bringing elk into Missouri from Kentucky in an effort to reintroduce the population into the state.
Missouri’s elk population appears to be settling into their new home state, according to state conservation officials.
Dr. Joseph Millspaugh updated the Missouri Conservation Commission Friday on the state’s elk herd, which he said seems to be doing well.
“Evidence of survival rates [and] reproductive rates that are average to high, we see diet quality certainly within the range of what we would expect…the stress response: nothing there that is indicative of a problem,” said Millspaugh.