CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Recent remarks by Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to sportsmen and women are stirring interest in West Virginia in a big game animal: elk.
According to published reports, Tomblin received strong applause when he mentioned bringing elk back to the state at a dinner hosted by Sportsmen for Tomblin.
The last native West Virginia elk was seen 137 years ago.
Kentucky has introduced thousands of elk to its borders, and Virginia has introduced a limited number of the big, buff-colored animals in the southwest section of the state. Some farm groups opposed elk in Virginia.
West Virginia has studied the matter several times. State wildlife officials said West Virginia needs an "effective, science-based elk management plan'' before moving forward.