The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (DGIF) has launched the 2019 elk cam. After nearly two years of rigorous work by donors and volunteers, the “Elk Cam” is now live to see elk while they are active during September and October as breeding season approaches. Elk are able to share their charismatic presence with all Virginians from the valleys of Appalachia through this live viewing camera.
The elk cam is an excellent way to showcase some of Virginia’s most charismatic wildlife species. Elk, during the fall rut period, are highly social and stay in large harem groups out in open areas. This behavior makes them easy to view and watch. DGIF hopes the elk cam will provide some opportunity to see elk for those who are unable to visit the site, some education opportunities and a way for DGIF to promote some of their success.
The Elk Cam will run annually from mid-August (calves and cows are expected to rejoin the herd) through November. Elk rut peaks between late September and early October and will have the greatest amount of all-day elk activity.
Three viewing stations are now open and are located on Buchanan County IDA
(Industrial Development Authority) property, which is located near Poplar Gap
Community Park. Each station was built on a different area of the property overlooking individual “viewing zones,” roughly within 1-mile proximity.
Virginia DGIF, in partnership with the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation and the
Kentucky Wildlife Resources Foundation, restored 75 elk from Kentucky to Buchanan County between 2012 and 2014. The population has remained close to where they were originally released on reclaimed surface mined lands and has grown to an estimated 250 elk.
To visit the elk cam go to: dgif.virginia.gov/elk-cam
For more information on Virginias elk, visit: dgif.virginia.gov/wildlife/elk/