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Kentucky's annual elk hunt permit drawing is Saturday; estimated 10,000 elk now in the commonwealth

More than 77,000 applications were submitted for Saturday's annual elk hunt drawing.
Rachel Cummings
More than 77,000 applications were submitted for Saturday's annual elk hunt drawing.

Kentucky’s annual elk hunt drawing takes place Saturday as part of the Kentucky Elk and Outdoor Fest in Bardstown. John Hast is the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources’ bear and elk program coordinator. He said they received more than 77-thousand applications for three types of permits.

“Folks have the option to choose from a bull gun tag, a cow gun tag or an either sex archery tag, so you can do our pick three. We’ll be drawing 500 permits this year.”

Hast said a recently-concluded five-year study put the elk population in Kentucky at just over 10,000 – and that the subspecies now in Kentucky likely vanished before the Civil War.

“John James Audubon talks about running into some, you know, down in Henderson County, when he traveled through, but that was that was some of the last accounts. So between ‘97 and 2002, we brought in just over 1,500 elk.”

The drawing will occur Saturday at the Kentucky Gun Company in Bardstown. It will also be livestreamed.

Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Resources Facebook page

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John McGary is a Lexington native and Navy veteran with three decades of radio, television and newspaper experience.
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