In a fascinating development, an elk who had a tire stuck around its neck for the last 2 years was freed at last recently. The 600-pound weighing elk is just 4 years old – and thus had the tire stuck around its neck for almost half of its life. The elk belongs to a hilly region of Colorado state in the USA. The recent and the most successful attempt to free him was actually the fourth attempt this week. As to how the tire got stuck around the elk’s neck, it sure is a mystery with specialists claiming it could’ve come off from a feeder.
The realms of animals and humans often overlap with objects and infrastructure intended for humans causing harm to animals. At times curious or unaware animals find themselves stuck in places and objects that they can’t really escape. Often humans, who were indirectly the cause of distress to animals, intervene to then help them out
Recently, an Elk from USA was finally freed. For almost half of its life, the elk was roaming the hills of Colorado with a tire stuck around its neck.
The Facts of the Matter
For the last two years, Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials received an alarm from a small town called Pine about a wildlife sighting. No, the residents did not see an endangered species, nor did they witness an attack. They saw an elk. While nothing about an elk sighting is usually special, this sighting was made special because the elk itself was special. The large bull had a tire stuck in its neck for the last two years.
Reportedly, the tire got stuck around the elk’s neck when it’s horns were not formed. Over the next two years as the elk grew larger, its antlers also got bigger and branched out. This led to the tire getting further locked around the neck.
Wild Life Official Receives Message on Elk’s Whereabouts
For the next two years, the wildlife authorities relied on the help of the local citizens who may catch the sight of the elk. Recently, a wildlife official Dawson Swanson received a message from a local who was claiming that the elk was in its backyard.
Interestingly enough, this would have been the fourth time in one week that the wildlife officials had tried to help the bull elk by tranquilizing it. However, the process was not as easy as it sounds as tranquilizers only work at a short range and elks move quickly when it hears any sound in enviornment.
Shots Fired, Chase Begins
The official swiftly headed to his yard. He had to rush as the herd the elk was part of, was slowly moving further and further away. He took one shot and the herd was soon gone with the wind.
The wildlife officials chased the herd and wandered into the dark woods. For the next 45 minutes, the officials looked for the elk and soon tracked it down. Wasting no further opportunities, they took multiple shots and tranquilized it.
The saga of the bull elk with a tire around its neck is over. Thanks to the residents just south of Pine Junction on CR 126 for reporting its location, wildlife officers were able to free it of that tire Saturday.
📸's courtesy of Pat Hemstreet pic.twitter.com/OcnceuZrpk
— CPW NE Region (@CPW_NE) October 11, 2021
Blade of Saw Breaks, Difficult Decision Taken
The officials soon started to work on the tranquilized beast. As they tried cutting the tire off, the blade of their saw broke due to the steel around the tire’s edge. The officials didn’t have much time to contemplate and soon decided that the only way to free the animal was to take a saw away a part of its antlers.
Why we cut the antlers off & not the tire:
1⃣ We tried, sawzall was slow going thru steel in the bead of the tire
2⃣ The animal was under anesthesia, time was limited
3⃣ Does not harm the elk, will grow back next year
4⃣ Reduces the chance the bull would be harvested this year pic.twitter.com/C24rgd5krs
— CPW NE Region (@CPW_NE) October 12, 2021
Finally, the tire was pulled out after the shearing of the antlers. The officials soon gave the beast a reverse tranquilizer dose to awaken it. The beast opened its eyes and wandered off in the forest.