Jackson, Wy – Over the past two decades, government
agencies killed more than 6,000 wild bison leaving Yellowstone National Park. The goal is to contain a serious livestock disease
the bison carry.
But the crosshairs are shifting to a new target -- elk -- as the
disease infects cattle in parts of Wyoming and Montana where bison haven't roamed for decades.
The disease brucellosis causes pregnant cattle to abort their young. State officials say elk from infected
herds around Yellowstone must be culled.
It's a prized big game species, and outfitters and hunters are
digging in against the idea. They're concerned that too much
hunting could shrink elk herds. They argue that wildlife managers
should focus on vaccinating cattle or eradicating the disease in
bison -- not on capturing and killing elk.