Managing elk in the wildland-urban interface: Attitudes of Flagstaff, Arizona residents

Martha E. Lee, Rick Miller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


Managing wildlife in the wildland-urban interface is as much about managing people as it is about managing wildlife. Wildlife managers in northern Arizona lacked objective information on resident perceptions and preferences regarding management of an urban elk (Cervus elaphus nelsoni) herd. From a mail survey of 484 Flagstaff residents, we found that respondents enjoyed seeing elk in the urban environment, and many traveled into nearby forest specifically to look for elk. However, they were concerned about automobile accidents involving elk and were less concerned about elk-caused property damage. Management preferences reflected concerns for safety and providing quality elk habitat. More than half of respondents expressed moderate to great concern about hunting the urban elk herd, with human safety being of greatest concern. Survey results indicate that wildland managers can lessen concerns about hunting urban elk by employing strategies such as providing a toll-free number to report violators and increasing law enforcement during hunts.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)185-191
Number of pages7
JournalWildlife Society Bulletin
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2003


  • Cervus elaphus
  • Elk
  • Elk management
  • Human dimensions
  • Hunting
  • Public attitudes
  • Urban wildlife

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nature and Landscape Conservation


Dive into the research topics of 'Managing elk in the wildland-urban interface: Attitudes of Flagstaff, Arizona residents'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this