MOUNT VERNON – Elk hunts planned this fall in Game Management Unit 418 (Nooksack) will be discussed here June 20 during an informational open house sponsored by the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW).
The public session is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. at the CottonTree Inn, 2300 Market Street, in Mount Vernon. WDFW enforcement officers and wildlife managers will be available to answer questions about Nooksack elk and the interim fall state and tribal hunts.
The proposal would allow 30 elk to be taken by state and tribal hunters.
After several years of joint recovery work by WDFW and Point Elliott treaty tribes, the once-depleted Nooksack elk herd has grown in numbers large enough to allow for limited hunting, said Dave Ware, WDFW game division manager.
Since 2003, state and tribal wildlife managers have relocated about 80 elk from the Mount St. Helens area to the Nooksack River watershed. Efforts to rebuild the herd also included projects to improve elk forage and a decade-long moratorium on hunting. The herd has rebounded from a low of about 300 animals to between 600 and 700 today.
“This meeting is an opportunity for hunters and others interested in Nooksack elk to discuss the herd, as well as interim state and tribal hunts in Game Management Unit 418 this season,” Ware said.
The Nooksack herd, one of 10 in Washington state, ranges in scattered groups near the south fork of the Nooksack River.