The Maryland Department of Natural Resources (DNR) recently announced the formation of a partnership which includes MD DNR, the Maryland Legislative Sportsmen’s Foundation (MLSF), and the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF) to determine the viability of elk reintroduction to Western Maryland.
Biological, social and economic feasibility assessments will require a minimum of 12 months to complete and must be evaluated before any decision is made.
According to scientists, elk in North America once occupied a range from the Appalachian Mountains to the Pacific coast and all points in between, except for extreme southern states like Florida and Hawaii.
The Sportsmen’s Foundation will contract with a professional consulting group to conduct a formal survey of public opinion on the question of returning elk to the State.
MD DNR will oversee development of the survey, which will gather input from farmers and other stakeholders that may be impacted by a return of the species.
Additionally MD DNR will assist with analysis of survey results and conduct an assessment of potential elk habitat in western Maryland.