Elk hunters achieve a high success rate

HARRISBURG — The Pennsylvania Game Commission reports that 104 elk were taken by hunters during the regular one-week elk season that ended Nov. 4. For those licensed to hunt antlered (bull) elk, the success rate was 100 percent.

The 2017 harvest included some large elk. Ten bulls each were estimated to weigh 700 pounds or more, with three of them going more than 800 pounds. The heaviest bull taken in this year’s hunt was estimated at 833 pounds. That bull, which sported an 8-by-7 rack, was taken Oct. 30 by Shawn Latshaw of Franklin.

Meanwhile, an 832-pounder with an 8-by-9 rack was taken by Robert Cook, of Earlville, New York, and an 803-pounder with a 6-by-7 rack was taken by Alfred Hake, of Manchester.

Not all of the bull elk taken in the hunt were measured and green-scored by rack size, but Cook’s bull had the highest green score at 431 6/8 inches, according to Boone & Crockett big-game scoring standards.

Official measurements of bulls taken in the hunt cannot be taken recorded until the antlers have air dried for at least 60 days after the animal was harvested.

There also were some large antlerless elk taken in the harvest. Nine of of the 79 cows taken by hunters during the one-week season weighed over 500 pounds.

Fifty-nine elk — 12 bulls and 47 cows — were taken on the opening day of the elk season, Oct. 30.

To participate in the elk hunt, hunters must submit an application, then must be selected through a random drawing and purchase a license. The drawing annually attracts more than 30,000 applicants.