Woman Trampled to Death by an Elk in Arizona, Prompting Officials to Warn Against Feeding Animals
“As discussed in the article below, fed elk can be very dangerous.
Arizona Game and Fish warns that bear, elk, moose and any other species that are fed by people, or get food from garbage or pets, lose their natural fear of humans and become dependent. This puts people and animals at risk.
NOTE: this article was originally published to NBC News’ Apple News Channel on November 8, 2023. It was written by Patrick Smith
A bucket of spilled corn was found near the woman’s body when he she was discovered after the attack, officials said.
An Arizona woman has died more than a week after she was trampled by an elk outside her home, wildlife officials said Tuesday.
The woman, who has not been named, died eight days after she was attacked by an animal on her property in the remote Pine Lake community in the Hualapai Mountains, 15 miles southeast of Kingman.
The Arizona Game and Fish Department said it was believed to be the first fatal elk attack in the state’s history. Five attacks have been recorded in the last five years, it said.
It said in a statement that the woman’s husband found her on the ground in the couple’s back yard at 6 p.m. Oct. 26 “with injuries consistent with being trampled by an elk.”
Nearby was a bucket of spilled corn, the department said, prompting it to repeat long-made warnings that the public should not feed elk or other large animals.
The woman was taken to a hospital in Las Vegas and placed in a medically induced coma. She died Thursday. The Clark County medical examiner’s office determined the death to be an accident.
The Game and Fish Department visited the property Oct. 28 to hand out signs warning people not to feed or approach any elk.
The department said that when they are fed, wildlife can become accustomed to being around humans — which can lead to attacks and injuries. In 2015, two children received minor injuries after elk circled a picnic table in the Hualapai Mountains. In 2021, a woman received serious head injuries from an elk that had become habituated to humans in Pine.
“The public is urged to help keep wildlife wild. Wildlife that are fed by people, or that get food sources from items such as unsecured garbage or pet food, lose their natural fear of humans and become dependent on unnatural food sources,” the department said in its statement.
“Feeding puts at risk the person doing the feeding, their neighbors, and the wildlife itself. Please do not feed wildlife.”
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