Watch: Colorado wildlife officers free elk from tire around its neck

Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers first learned of an elk with a tire around its neck in July 2019 during a survey near Mount Evans. Officers finally succeeded in freeing it. Credit: Colorado Parks and Wildlife

After carrying a tire around its neck for at least two years, an elk was finally freed of the burden after Colorado Parks and Wildlife officers tranquilized it and removed the tire.

Wildlife officers Dawson Swanson and Scott Murdoch had to cut the antlers off the 4 ½-year-old bull elk (Cervus canadensis). After removing the tire, they found the elk’s neck showed only minor signs of injury. It was the officers’ fourth attempt in a week to remove the tire.

Wildlife officers first became aware of the elk in July 2019 (click here to see a photo from that sighting). Trail cameras picked it up again a year later. In May and June 2021, officers made four attempts to catch it, but the elk evaded them. Sightings picked back up in September and early October (one of which you can see in this video).

Read more from Colorado Parks and Wildlife. For more on the circumstances surrounding this elk, watch the 2020 video below.