Regional Offices > Cody Region > Cody Region News > Biologists classify elk

Biologists classify elk

February 27, 2020
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Cody - Each winter, biologists with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department collect ratio data on elk populations through ground and aerial observations.  

During these classification efforts, biologists record the total number of elk in a given area along with the age and sex class of each individual.  From the total number of elk sampled, biologists evaluate the number of calves per 100 cows, the number of adult bulls per 100 cows and the number of yearling bulls per 100 cows. 

Wildlife Coordinator Corey Class said that this provides biologists with a “snapshot” of the population.  “Classification data is just one piece of the puzzle and is used in conjunction with harvest data, population model data and trend numbers to evaluate hunting seasons and assess herd productivity,” Class said.   “This information is compiled annually by herd unit and will be available in the 2019 Big Game Job Completion report at wgfd.wyo.gov in early summer.” 



Cody area Wildlife Biologist Tony Mong uses a high definition video camera during a recent classification flight for elk.

The photo above is a still taken from high definition footage from a recent classification flight.  Back at the office, biologists can review footage frame by frame to determine age and sex class of elk that are in large groups.

- WGFD -


 
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