Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin drew applause over the weekend when he told a group of hunters and anglers it could be time to bring elk back to West Virginia.
The governor made the surprise announcement Saturday at a dinner hosted by Sportsmen for Tomblin, a political action committee.
The last native West Virginia elk was spotted 137 years ago. Early settlers over-hunted the animals and deforested the mountains where they lived.
Dave Arnold, the group’s treasurer, said Tomblin’s remarks drew “huge applause” from the 100 or so outdoors enthusiasts dining at the Days Hotel in Flatwoods.