CPW to start low-altitude helicopter flights Dec. 6 to count deer, elk


Description: Helicopters allow Colorado Parks and Wildlife biologists to fly low enough to photograph and effectively count herds of elk and deer as they make their annual assessment of big game herds. Photo courtesy of Colorado Parks and Wildlife

CPW to start low-altitude helicopter flights Dec. 6 to count deer, elk

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Beginning Dec. 6, Colorado Parks and Wildlife biologists will assess deer and elk populations by conducting low-altitude helicopter flights in southeast Colorado, west of Interstate 25.

Then in mid- to late-December, biologists will launch similar helicopter flights in the southeastern plains of Colorado to the east of I-25.

Southeast Region residents can expect low-flying helicopters that spend a small amount of time in a specific area and then move on searching for more deer, elk, moose and bighorn sheep.  

The flights beginning Dec. 6 will target Park and Fremont counties before sweeping into El Paso and Teller counties, north of U.S. Highway 50, and then through Lake and Chaffee counties. 

Then the biologists will fly south through Pueblo, Custer, Huerfano and Las Animas counties.

The eastern flight plan calls for helicopters to tour along the South Republican River drainage from Flagler to the Kansas state line. Then the helicopters will turn south into Kit Carson and Cheyenne counties followed by tours of Kiowa, Prowers and Baca counties.

The helicopter surveys will conclude with flights along the Arkansas River from the Kansas state line to Colorado Highway 71.

If the weather permits, CPW biologists hope to conclude their herd assessment flights by early January.

For more information on CPW’s wildlife population objectives, visit cpw.state.co.us/ThingsToDo/pages/HerdManagementPlans.aspx