Elk On the Loose in Pennsylvania Town

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Residents in Sugarcreek Borough, Pennsylvania have been enjoying the company of some large bull elk in their neighborhood. The elk have been attracting a large number of people each evening to view them.  “He walked within five yards of me and, oh my God,” said Mike Vehe, who described the elk as a “nice animal.” However at a borough council meeting the residents voiced their displeasure over the police hunting the animals. They feel like the taxpayers are picking up the tab for police officials to hunt the elk. The police say they are there to put up signs warning motorists to slow down, and watch out for the elk, also to put down the elk if they are any danger to citizens. It is believed the elk escaped from a Sugarcreek Borough Farm.

The Pennsylvania Game Commission said an owner has 48 hours to retrieve an escaped farm animal before officers can tranquilize and euthanize it. From WTAE.com.

Comments

groovy mike's picture

common sense no longer seems to be common.

The key issue seems to be that common sense no longer seems to be common.  People want to get close to them don’t seem to realize that large animals especially wild animals are dangerous. Mr. Vehe, is mistaken to described the elk as a “nice animal.” The elk is an animal who doesn’t fit well in the anthropomorphic descriptions that Disney productions and PETA want to give it.  The animal will not react ‘nice’ with a fondness for humankind if he feels threatened, or happens to get stung by a bee with a crowd of preschoolers standing around him.  People who actually know what they are doing around them and who are used to handling them all day long get killed by domestic cattle and horses on a regular basis.  Large animals are dangerous – period – end of story.  Now take a horse and put eight feet of antler on him, raise him in the wild and try to imagine what happens (this might get you somewhere near the idea of the risk of being within five yards of a big bull elk.  It is an amazing experience to see these magnificent animals.   Whether they are elk, bison, bears, or alligators.  The bottom line is that they can kill you and it is your fault if you get too close.  Hopefully the police in

Sugarcreek Borough are not abusing their position and the letter of the Pennsylvania Game Commission ‘s forty eight hour law to poach elk from a local game preserve, or even from a high fence hunting farm.  Hopefully, police officials are acting in the public’s best interest and taking a reasonable approach to balancing safety and watching out for the elk.  It sounds like someone is on the right track by raising the issue at the borough council meetings so that the residents can voiced their concerns and the police can respond in a reasonable manner.

arrowflipper's picture

here we go again

Wow!  Here we go again.  Just a week or so ago, we read of a motorist in Canada that is suing the provincial government because they hit an animal in the road.  For some reason, it must have been the government's fault.

And now we find the exact opposite.  (At least until someone gets hurt)  People in this Pennsylvania town are saying that as taxpayers, they own the animals and the police don't have any right bothering them.  Is there a happy middle ground anywhere in this world?  I'll guarantee you this however, if someone gets hurt by one of those big, beautiful bull elk, it will then be the government's fault.

How did we ever get ourselves into this mess?  How did everything always be the fault of someone else?  When did we lose accountability for what we ourselves did?  If I am walking down the street and trip over a crack in the sidewalk that I can clearly see, and I chip a tooth, I immediately look to see who I can sue to pay for my tooth.  How about if I burn my tongue on some coffee I just bought at McDonald's that came to me hot?  Whose fault is that?

And again, it never ceases to amaze me how close people want to get to these wild animals.  Five yards is way too close to an animal with the capabilities a big bull elk has.  It almost seems like people flirt with disaster, knowing they have someone else to blame if something goes wrong.

I'm happy for the people in that little town that they get to see a magnificent animal up close.  I just hope they use a little common sense and when something does go bad, they know who to blame.