41 Elk Fall Through Ice, Die in Oregon

Wildlife officials couldn't save the herd
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 28, 2016 8:51 AM CST
Elk are seen in the snow near Grygla, Minn.   (Marshal Deters/Minnesota Department of Natural Resources via AP)

(Newser) – Oregon is home to 41 fewer elk—and poachers aren't to blame. On Tuesday, an elk herd fell through ice while trying to cross the Brownlee Reservoir on Powder River, says the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, which was told about the incident by a witness. Only four elk were alive when officials arrived but couldn't be saved because of unstable ice, reports OregonLive. The bodies of the others also couldn't be reached, reports the Baker City Herald. The slight silver lining: Oregon is experiencing a wet winter following a drought and "the extra moisture and snowpack will be good for wildlife and habitat in the long run," the ODFW says. (Read more Oregon stories.)

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