Albuquerque Journal (Albuquerque, NM)

Rancher Vows To Kill More Elk.(Journal North)

Byline: Jeff Jones Journal Staff Writer

* Chavez Creek manager says animals are dining in his hayfields

Sometime soon, Chavez Creek Ranch manager David Sanchez said, he'll probably grab his 7 mm Magnum rifle and gun down another group of elk dining in his hayfields -- some of them just a few weeks away from giving birth.

"I think of elk now as an 800-pound gopher. They're a varmint," Sanchez said Thursday. "For those people who live in the cities and don't understand what we're going through, I offer them an 800-pound gopher for their back yard."

The carcass count is already at 19 at this Rio Arriba County ranch just north of Tierra Amarilla. The dead elk, most left to rot after Sanchez killed them, were victims of a dispute between the ranch's owner, Joe Garcia, and the state Game and Fish Department. …

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