Climbing into a hunting blind at night with a rifle in hand? It sounds more than a little fishy, doesn’t it? But the truth is it’s part of an effort overseen by the Idaho Department of Fish and Game (IDFG) to ease elk damage to farm land.
John Guthrie, landowner/sportsman coordinator, placed branches in a field to help estimate the distance from the blind as an indicator if elk would be in range. He also loaded a telemetry device into the dart which decreases the effective range. The goal was to get an elk within 35 yards of the blind and make a shot.
Findings from a successful darting will allow biologists to attach GPS radio collars, track their movements and determine solutions to prevent elk damage and depredations to private land.
While elk entered the field on this particular night, they were not close enough to be darted. The crew will have to try again another time.
(Photo source: Idaho Department of Fish and Game)