If Rudolph got made fun of for having a red nose, this elk probably still hasn’t heard the end of it from her elk friends.
A cow elk in Evergreen, Colorado, found herself in a sticky situation when a toy basketball hoop ended up around her neck. Maybe she was just trying to start a new fashion trend, or perhaps got inspired by the women’s U.S. Olympic basketball team. Nonetheless, residents were concerned and officers with Colorado Parks and Wildlife decided to take action.
Monday afternoon, officers were able to dart the fully-grown female elk in the Troutdale area above Evergreen Lake.
Colorado Parks and Wildlife spokesperson Jennifer Churchill said, “it happens pretty much every year.”
Frequently, the elk that get caught up are bulls.
“Often it’s upsetting to people and they want us to go in and intervene,” said Churchill. “But the antlers fall off. If the animal can see, breathe and eat, we prefer not to tranquilize.” That’s because tranquilizing itself is dangerous for the animal.
Elk are known to get caught up in tennis nets, Christmas lights and backyard clotheslines.
In this case, officers chose to free the elk even though her distress was not as urgent. They were able to remove the hoop and get the elk up and on her way.