If the outlook holds, Missouri may hold its first managed elk hunt in 2020. As reported by KBIA, the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) recently provided an update on the state’s elk population and outlined a potential elk hunt in 2020.
The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation provided funding and volunteer manpower in working with various partner groups to help return wild, free-ranging elk to Missouri in 2011. Those 34 elk have since grown to an overall population of approximately 170. MDC has said there need to be a least 200 animals to hold an elk hunt.
Biologists estimate Missouri will reach that threshold by 2020 with a population numbering between 400 and 500 by 2024. In addition to the minimum population of 200, the other prerequisites to holding a hunt are 10 percent population growth for three consecutive years and a ratio of at least 25 bulls for every 100 cows.
(Photo source: Missouri Department of Conservation)