As many of us know, animals can get pretty aggressive this time of the year when they’re in rut. Luckily, few of us have encountered an elk quite like the one captured in this video by a couple in Montana.
Heather Leigh and her boyfriend Glen were riding down Highway 200 on their way from Ovando when they noticed the elk next to a pulled-over truck.
Leigh then watched the elk jump up on its hind legs and peer into the driver’s window of the truck.
“I am willing to bet that if Glen hadn’t hit the throttle when he had, that elk would have jumped on us,” Leigh wrote in the description of the video she captured.
While the couple enjoyed the uncanny sight at first, knowing that the situation could get messy quick, they eventually sped off.
“I didn’t want the animal to chase us on the road and put it in danger, so losing it seemed appropriate,” she wrote. “I had enough excitement for one day!”
Joe Jaquith, a game warden with Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks told The Montana Standard that they had received a number of calls from residents in the region who were concerned by the elk’s behaviour. Because it was getting so close to people, acting aggressively, and interfering with traffic, the bull elk was later shot and killed by a state game warden.
“It’s unfortunate. We don’t like to do it; we like wildlife.” Jaquith said. “But once in a while an animal gets too habituated to people and you know it will come back and cause problems down the road.”
The elk was field dressed and donated to the local food bank.