West Virginia is getting more elk.
The Arizona Game & Fish Commission voted Saturday to ship as many as 60 elk to the Mountain State, probably in early 2018.
Amber Munig, big-game management supervisor for the Arizona Game & Fish Department, confirmed that the approval had taken place.
“Additional translocations in the next 2-4 years may be considered pending the success of this translocation and the status of our elk populations here [in Arizona],” Munig said in an email. “We are not starting the logistical planning for the translocation, so we do not have more details yet.”
According to Munig, the elk will be transported to the Mountain State by a professional livestock hauling company, most likely in January, February or March.
West Virginia’s elk management plan calls for the animals to be stocked in West Virginia’s southwestern counties, most likely in the Tomblin Wildlife Management Area, on the border of Logan and Mingo counties.
Those elk will join the 23 already roaming the property. Twenty-four animals from Kentucky’s Land Between the Lakes Elk and Bison Prairie were stocked on the Tomblin tract in December 2016. Three of the 24 animals died, but two calves were born in June.
Sources for the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources have not commented on the agreement.