A number of wild bison were captured after they wandered outside of the northern border of Yellowstone National Park attempting to migrate into Montana. In an attempt to prevent the spread of brucellosis in Montana livestock, officials will likely be slaughtering the 75 captured bison.

This is only part of the plan to hunt or slaughter up to 900 Yellowstone bison this year in an attempt to keep the disease contained. The brucellosis disease, which also affects elk in Yellowstone National Park, has cost ranchers and farmers billions of dollars as the highly-contagious disease is transmitted to livestock when the animals leave the boundaries of the park.

More than 50% of bison in the Yellowstone National Park ecosystem have tested positive for the disease, hence the extreme measure being taken by Federal and State officials.

So far this winter, hunters have killed nearly 400 Yellowstone bison crossing into Montana. There are areas of the state of Montana in which these bison can roam free, but they are under heavy surveillance and could still face potential capture or death as part of this mandate.

H/T: The Missoulian