They stroll down the streets, camp out in front yards, swim in the pond and give birth on golf courses – but the residents of Estes Park, Colo., don’t really mind. Elk are such an iconic symbol of the Rockies, they get the run of this tourist town which celebrates the plentiful population with elk-themed businesses, products and a statue.
Check out this video by MSNBC:
It’s an unusual scenario in which a population of large wild animals is able to live in harmony with humans in an urban setting. Tourists, who come by the millions to visit the nearby Rocky Mountains State Park, reach out their car windows to pet the majestic creatures.
Not that they don’t get into trouble. A Colorado Division of Wildlife officer spoke to MSNBC about the many objects he’s had to remove from wandering elk.
“Bird feeders, wind chimes – you name it, I’ve taken it off an elk.”