Nashville, TN – Three hunters recorded harvests during Tennessee’s second-ever managed elk hunt which concluded Friday, October 22nd at North Cumberland Wildlife Management Area.
The three sportsmen join five persons who all harvested an elk during last year’s historic first managed hunt. Five persons again participated in this year’s hunt, four winning the right to participate by computerized drawing and the fifth participant was the recipient of a permit that is donated to a Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) which this year was the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.
Jeffery Burdick, of Oakdale, had the honor of recording this year’s first harvest on Monday, October 18th. The bull field dressed at 495 pounds and was a 5×4 (the number of points per antler).
The second harvest came on Tuesday, October 19th. Joseph E. McDonald harvested a 3×3 bull which field dressed at 209 pounds. McDonald is a Clinton resident.
The final harvest came on Thursday. Gregory Joseph Burns, of Clarksville, recorded the biggest harvest of this year’s hunt. The 5×5 bull field dressed at 562 pounds. Burns had bow hunted the previous days before using a gun to record his harvest.
All three of the harvests came within the 12:30pm-4:00pm time frame. In 2009’s inaugural hunt, three of the harvests came early on opening morning while the final two harvests came late in the afternoon.
Randy Hoisington of Blocksburg, CA, bid $11,000 for the NGO permit to participate in the hunt. He used a bow to hunt during the duration of the event. Michael Duane Galloway, of Corryton, was the fourth recipient of the drawing who participated, but was unable to come up with a harvest.
Five elk hunting zones were selected on the Royal Blue Unit of the North Cumberland WMA, each about 8,000 acres. The division helps ensure the harvest was spread over the entire core of the elk zone. Each hunter was assigned a zone through a random hand-held drawing.
The Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency has worked to make habitat improvements at North Cumberland WMA. The first arrival of 50 animals came in December 2000 and were the first elk to be in Tennessee since they were reported in Obion County in 1865. Studies have proven that the elk herd is seeing an annual growth rate of 13-15 percent.