No Need to Emergency Feed Big Game Animals This Winter
(KLIX) – Despite recent snowstorms, the Idaho Department of Fish and Game says it’s a fairly normal winter and there’s no need for it to implement widespread emergency feeding of big game animals to help them survive the rest of the season.
The department steps in to feed wintering animals during critical weather periods, but big game animals are well-adapted to most winter conditions.
“Winter feeding is typically done under emergency conditions only,” the department said in a news release. “In most years, snow depths and temperatures do not create adverse conditions for wintering animals. Deer, elk, pronghorn and other wildlife are adapted to Idaho’s climate and can withstand most winter weather conditions.”
Feeding advisory committees, located in most regions of the state, monitor weather conditions and other factors. If necessary, the committees convene and make recommendations to the department whether to begin emergency feeding.
While there’s no need for widespread emergency feeding, there has been at least one instance of localized emergency feeding.
A recent herd of elk moved close to highways near Rexburg, creating public safety hazards and prompting Fish and Game officials to start emergency winter feeding.