Michigan State University and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources are joining forces to fund a three-year project to track elk movements along the state’s Lower Peninsula.

The main goal of the study is to gain insight into the effect of human recreation activities in what is labelled as “core elk range”. This range is made up of around 100,000 acres of public land in Otsego and Cheboygan counties in the state of Michigan.

Native elk in the state of Michigan disappeared around 1875, but thanks to conservation and reintroduction, they were once again able to be hunted in 1964. During the next ten years, the population was devastated by poachers and reduced habitat and by the end of 1975, there were only 200 elk remaining.

As part of this project, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources conducted an aerial survey which found about 1,000 elk in the area.

H/T: ClickOnDetroit
Image: Erwin W. Cole / Photo courtesy of USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service., via Wikimedia Commons