3 Elk Calves

There were 3 elk calves in this small Roosevelt Elk herd today.  I read that a calf is fully weaned by the end of the summer…about 2 months old.  And a calf will gain 250-300 pounds in the first year.  As quickly as they gain weight, maybe these 2 calves are only a couple weeks apart?  I’ve got more questions than answers!

Calves find Mom by smell
How do calves and moms find each other again?

The calves don’t stick right next to mom all day so do they find each other again by smell or voice or sight?  I’ve seen the calf get close to a couple cows who chase it away before she finds the one she can nurse.

elk cow and calf
Cow not happy with calf

At least once during the summer I’ll see a yearling nursing and wonder if the mom had and lost a calf and her last year’s calf is just opportunistic?

Elk Yearling Nursing
Elk Yearling Nursing

They’re beautiful animals without a doubt.

elk calf sizes
Big size difference between calves

The Roosevelt Elk calves will mostly lose their spots by winter.  But the yearlings still act like kids; jumping, running and playing with each other.  Here’s one of the little calves trying to figure out the purpose of a scarecrow.  To watch this YouTube video in a larger window, click on the play arrow and then on the YouTube icon in the lower right corner.

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