Off the Trail – Arguing Over Elk

More on the continual argument. This time on Boise State University radio-

Arguing over Elk. By Adam Cotterell. Boise State Radio.



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  1. Jon Way Avatar

    Nice article… I hope the lady from Fish and Game doesn’t lose her job for accurately speaking about the benefits of having wolves around.

  2. ken Fischman, Ph.D. Avatar
    ken Fischman, Ph.D.

    Did anyone pick up the IDF&G lady’s statement that there are 3 zones in the Clearwater in which there are both high wolf #s and High elk #s? Using F&G’s own strange logic, this should mean that wolves increase elk population. That, of course is preposterous, but so is IDF&G’s contention that wolves alone are responsible for the low elk/calf ratios in 2 other zones.

    Another important point alluded to is the contention that hunting can regulate elk numbers. Historically, hunter success no matter how many elk tags are issued, is around 20%. This is still true, even in the presence of wolves. One hunter spokesman in the St Joe area said he would only be satisfied when the success rate increased to 90%. Consider what Idaho’s forest would look like if the success rate only climbed to 30%.

    1. Layton Avatar


      I can’t get the BSU radio blurb to play — but, I don’t understand your comment.

      There are only two zones in the Clearwater drainage – Lolo and Elk City – that my hunting regs reference. What do you mean by there being 3 zones that have both high wolf and elk numbers??


Dr. Ralph Maughan is professor emeritus of political science at Idaho State University. He was a Western Watersheds Project Board Member off and on for many years, and was also its President for several years. For a long time he produced Ralph Maughan’s Wolf Report. He was a founder of the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. He and Jackie Johnson Maughan wrote three editions of “Hiking Idaho.” He also wrote “Beyond the Tetons” and “Backpacking Wyoming’s Teton and Washakie Wilderness.” He created and is the administrator of The Wildlife News.

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