Idaho spending $650,000 to feed elk, deer and antelope

Posted at 1:57 PM, Feb 01, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-01 20:10:58-05

Idaho is spending about $650,000 this winter to feed elk, deer and antelope at 110 sites around the southern half of the state, according to Idaho Department of Fish and Game officials.

The Department on Wednesday says it's feeding about 10,000 elk, 10,000 deer and 100 antelopes.

The sites are in areas where officials say an unusually severe winter is causing problems for big game.

Officials say the number of elk being fed represents seven percent of the state's elk population, while the number of deer being fed is less than two percent.

Officials say the emergency feeding is intended to reduce damage to private crops, keep animals from roads and provide nutrition.

"The reality is we are only really reaching a very small percentage of the population and hopefully that does those animals some good. But the impact is really isolated," said Jon Rachael the state big manager for Idaho Fish and Game.

State officials say deer and elk herds have grown with several years of mild winters, but numbers could decline this winter.

(by Associated Press)