BOISE, Idaho — Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. One bull elk in Ketchum is definitely feeling that after getting his antlers stuck in yard furniture. Again.
According to Idaho Fish and Game, Wood River Valley residents alerted Fish and Game on Monday that an elk was strangled in a rope swing at a home south of Ketchum.
Officials said the elk had his antlers caught in the swing but managed to break away from the tree, but with the wooden slats for the seat and several feet of rope still ensnared in his antlers.
Fish and Game officers tranquilized the bull to safely remove the tangled rope.
Senior Conservation Officer Brandyn Hurd said this is the second time this bull elk has had some issues with yard furniture. Back in October, the same elk almost died in the Big Wood River after his antlers got caught in a hammock and became water-soaked when he ran into the river.
Officials said all big game animals that are tranquilized are tagged with a green ear tag and an ID number. When the bull was down, officers found the tag and learned that this bull was the same one that got caught in a hammock.
Hurd emphasized that people need to take care of their outdoor furniture so wild animals don't get caught up in it, as this bull elk did.
"All backyard furniture and playground equipment needs to be removed and secured during the winter months," Hurd said in a statement. "Wildlife can easily get entangled in this equipment which puts the animal at risk, but it also puts the Fish and Game team at risk when using drugs to anesthetize the animal and working to free them from backyard equipment."