Papers cover Sequim elk update

The Seattle Times and the Port Townsend and Jefferson County Leader both posted the latest update on what the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe and the state of Washington have proposed to do with the Sequim Elk herd. From the Seattle Times:

Instead of moving a herd of elk that has been hemmed in by development in Sequim, wildlife managers have decided to spend about $1 million to erect fences to keep the animals out of highways and farms.

The elk became an issue when suburban development encroached on their traditional habitat. The elk have become a nuisance, eating and trampling crops, and damaging city parks.

The Port Townsend and Jefferson County Leader:

Fence, not relocation, is best option to control Sequim elk herd

After reviewing public comments that overwhelmingly opposed moving the Dungeness Roosevelt Elk Herd out of Sequim, the herd’s co-managers have agreed to pursue efforts to fence the animals away from highways and residential areas.

The decision to explore fencing options was reached during a Jan. 23 meeting of the Dungeness-Sequim Elk Policy Group. The group includes the herd’s co-managers, the Jamestown S’Klallam Tribe and Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife, as well as area landowners, including the City of Sequim, Clallam and Jefferson counties, the Washington Department of Natural Resources and the U.S. Forest Service.

The proposed fence would be designed to keep the elk on public land and prevent them from moving into Sequim’s urban areas. There had been talk of physically relocating the herd to Jefferson County’s Dosewallips Valley area.

The co-managers will investigate fencing routes and present the alternatives during the elk policy group’s meeting in early March. Past cost estimates have placed fencing at more than $1 million. The tribal and state co-managers are investigating funding options, including applying for grants.