HALLSVILLE (AP) — A 14-year-old Missouri girl who thought she was shooting a large white-tailed buck instead took down an elk.
Missouri conservation agent Tom Strother said the girl was hunting with her dad, Don White, Saturday when she took the shot. When her dad realized the animal was an elk, he called a conservation agent.
The Springfield News-Leader reported that Missouri currently has no hunting season for elk. A herd is being grown in southeast Missouri after elk were reintroduced at Peck Ranch Conservation Area in 2011.
White said it could be a couple of weeks or longer before the Missouri Department of Conservation finds out where the elk came from. He also said the elk had no tag holes in its ears, and he thinks it was "free range."
Strother says the elk shot Saturday was 200 miles away from the Peck Ranch herd, between Hallsville and Centralia.
The carcass is undergoing several tests, to see if it's diseased or to get clues where it came from.
No enforcement actions have been taken against the young hunter.