Abstract - A Cooperative Elk Trapping Program in Wind Cave National Park

Lovaas, Allan L. 1973. A Cooperative Elk Trapping Program in Wind Cave National Park. The Wildlife Society Bulletin 1. pp. 93-100.


Active management is required to control the size of the elk (Cervus canadensis) population in Wind Cave National Park, a fenced 28,059-acre tract in the Black Hills. Efforts to reduce the population by driving elk out of the park or encouraging egress were ineffectual. Shooting by park rangers was effective, but was discontinued to avoid adverse public reaction. Elk increased to 800 in the fall of 1969, despite management plans for a maximum of 300 animals. In cooperation with the Jicarilla Apaches, Oglala Sioux, South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks, and Bureau of Indian Affairs, park personnel remodeled a bison (Bison bison) trap and, with inproved techniques, trapped 657 elk from 1969 through 1972. Elk were transplanted to the Jicarilla and Pine Ridge Indian Reservations, and to Custer State Park, for fee hunting programs. Citation from J. Studdendieck & G. Wilson, "An Identification of Prairie in National Park Units in the Great Plains," p. 172, NPS 1986 (BEOL).

Last updated: April 10, 2015

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