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Bull Elk Recently Poached in Nyack Area of Glacier National Park

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Date: November 24, 2008
Contact: Amy Vanderbilt, 406 888-5838

WEST GLACIER, MONT. – Acting on tips from legal hunters located outside Glacier National Park on Wednesday, November 12 park rangers and Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks (FWP) game wardens recently completed an investigation into the illegal shooting of a bull elk inside park boundaries in the Nyack area of the Middle Fork of the Flathead River. Charges are pending.

According to Glacier’s Chief Park Ranger Mark Foust, park rangers were contacted the morning of November 12th by sportsmen who were legally hunting outside the park. The reporting party indicated that they and another hunter had been observing elk from across the river. The two hunters were watching a bull elk in the vicinity of Nyack Creek when they heard a gunshot.  The individuals reported seeing the bull recoil, then take a few steps and collapse on the boundary trail inside the park. The reporting party walked to the location where they believed the shot originated from and encountered a 16-year-old male juvenile within sight of the dead elk.

Park rangers contacted the juvenile suspect later that morning and confiscated the elk. A joint investigation was conducted by park rangers and FWP wardens wherein the elk was transferred to FWP and the meat was donated to the Flathead Food Bank.

The poaching occurred where Nyack Creek enters the Middle Fork of the Flathead River.  Along the Middle Fork, from the North Fork confluence to Java, the park’s southern boundary is located at the normal high water mark on the park side of the river.

Foust encourages anyone observing illegal or suspicious hunting activity within the park to report such observations by calling park headquarters at 406-888-7800. After hours, reporting parties should call the Flathead County Sheriff’s Office at 406-758-5610 or 1-800-TIP-MONT (1-800-847-6668). Reporting parties do not have to identify themselves and all reports are kept confidential. 

- NPS -

Did You Know?

U-shaped valley carved by a glacier

Glacier National park was named for the glaciers that carved, sculpted, and formed this landscape millions of years ago. Despite the recession of current glaciers, the park's name will not change when the glaciers are gone.