My friend and I were hunting deer (F, with licenses, on public land), and we killed three elk (all F) by accident. The story is complicated how we did this. But we are inexperienced, and are gravely regretful for what we have done. This is the most horrible thing that we have done in our entire lives.
We were able to harvest the meat from one animal, but were not able to harvest the meat from the other two. We would like to know the repercussions to the eco-system. It was a large herd of elk, about 25-30. We understand that this was illegal what we did. However, we do not know the seriousness of what we have done. Though one animal provided meat, the other two left will either decay or be eaten by scavengers. Though some of the energy will return to the ecosystem, we would like to understand better what is the overall environmental impact. We do not feel that it would accomplish anything for us to turn ourselves in. But if there is something else that we can do to atone for the damage that we have done, we will take that into consideration.
Thank you for any replies.