Wyoming only state that artificially feeds elk, contributing to the spread of deadly diseases and disruption of natural behavior
On June 1, the Alliance and five partner organizations submitted a comprehensive recommendation to Wyoming Game and Fish calling for the phasing out of 22 state-run elk feedgrounds in northwest Wyoming.
Wyoming is the only state in the western US that continues to artificially feed elk. The practice, which unnaturally congregates thousands of ungulates in one place during the winter months, disrupts normal migratory behavior in elk and can lead to spreading of lethal diseases like chronic wasting disease.
“The science tells us that closure of feedgrounds and moving to natural forage is the only solution to reducing disease transmission,” says John Carter of Yellowstone to Uintas Connection in a press release by the Sierra Club.
Alliance Conservation Director Chelsea Carson added that other western states similar to Wyoming have successfully managed conflict with elk and ranchers by utilizing appropriate fencing and strategies like hazing and livestock herding.