The world’s largest remaining herd of the native rare Tule elk are dying of thirst at the Point Reyes National Seashore after ranchers erected an eight-foot high fence separating the elk from leased dairy and meat farms. The National Park Service built the fences to appease cattle ranchers holding leases in the park. According to the San Francisco Chronicle, there are 445 tule elk; a prime tourist attraction coming to admire the magnificent antlered animals. In 1978, a small herd of 30 tule elk had been reintroduced onto the land – a preserve surrounded by three miles of fencing. Five years ago, the herd was almost all wiped out because of a drought – this year looks to be the same.
“Thirsty elk are currently beset by drought, wildfire smoke, and a heatwave, and caged into the preserve by a fence, which prevents them from accessing alternative water sources. The NPSPS has sided with local ranchers and refuses to provide water for fenced-in elk. The Park has blocked In Defense of Animals and our partners from delivering water to the dying elk.”Cattle ranchers block water access for rare Tule elk now dying of thirst • Pet Rescue Report