Smoky Mountain Elk Watch
Organized by: Robert Ferguson
Reintroduced into the Great Smokies just 13 years ago, Elk have come home to the Oconaluftee area near Cherokee, North Carolina, after a 200 year absence. A year ago I began to watch them about 3 times a week in and around the National Park where they roam free. The Elk roam free except when they get crowded by people who get too close. I call my efforts "Herding humans so the Elk can run free."
I have been educating many people on what I know about these Elk, and remind them to give the Elk lots of freedom. Most people are very appreciative of my assistance and sharing of what I know about these Elk.
Through the fall and winter I may be the only watcher of the Elk who can help keep the Elk roaming free. I have been funding this initiative single-handedly and am just now trying to raise money for this Elk awareness education.
Something I would like to do is to buy a spotting scope so that, from a distance, folks can watch the Elk closely. UPDATE: On 10/08, Bought a spotting scope! Folks have really enjoyed being able to see the Elk better. Some have even used their phones to get good pictures. One had an iPad, and now what I am looking to is buy an iPad to mount on the scope, and have an Elk screen so that several folks at a time can have a real good view of the far-off Elk.
Also, I keep up the news of the Elk numbers and general health on a website at this location: GreatSmokiesElk.com
You can check it out and see my dedication and a bit of my knowledge about what I call our Elk.
Thank you and look forward to seeing you on the fields if you can come see our Elk in person.