Elk Euthanized After Butting DeBeque Man

An elk that was becoming too aggressive near people was euthanized today near DeBeque by Colorado Division of Wildlife Officers.

The young elk had apparently been fed regularly by humans and was acclimated to being around people. This morning the animal bumped a resident at Bass Lake south of DeBeque, and was also approaching pet dogs.

Colorado Division of Wildlife Public Information Officer Randy Hampton says wildlife managers had no choice but to kill the animal. He says the animal could not have been moved to another location because it appeared ill, and transplanting such an animal could spread disease into an otherwise healthy herd.

Hampton says feeding wild animals is illegal and can lead to injury or death of both people and the animal if it continues. He says fewer than a half–dozen animals are euthanized in northwestern Colorado each year.