Kingman elk

A cow elk recovers from brief sedation after being moved from the Mohave County Fairgrounds to the foothills northeast of Kingman by Arizona Game and Fish Department personnel. It was the second elk relocation in the last month. Elk that wander into the city can become a safety hazard for themselves, motorists and residents.

KINGMAN — A cow elk made a spectacle of herself roaming into the Kingman city limits from the nearby Hualapai Mountains early Sunday.

Kingman Deputy Police Chief Rusty Cooper said motorists reported the elk to be a traffic hazard in the area of Airfield Avenue and Harrison Street at 4:45 a.m.

“Officers arrived and found the cow elk to be walking in the roadway,” Cooper said. “Officers were able to direct the elk into the Mohave County Fairgrounds, where they were able to keep her contained.”

Arizona Game and Fish Regional Sup. Larry Phoenix said a young bull elk wandered from the mountains into the downtown area a couple of weeks ago. The animal was contained for sedation in the area of the Lee Williams High School ballfields.

Phoenix said there’s such an abundance of vegetation that the animals can wander carelessly during their feeding frenzy.

“It is sort of really strange that they would come into town when there’s so much to eat up on the mountain,” Phoenix said. “They start to just feed their way down the mountain and before you know it, they end up here.”

Phoenix said the agency continually reminds people not to feed or water wildlife because animals become dangerously comfortable around people. Both elk were sedated and successfully reintroduced into the wild.

Phoenix said a drug cocktail designed for elk and deer is fired from a dart gun, and aimed at the rump of the animal. He said most usually get groggy and go to the ground within five to 10 minutes

Phoenix said the animals are then blindfolded and hobbled by their hooves to eliminate their mobility. He said they are sprayed with plenty of water to keep them cool as they are taken to chosen release points.

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