What Arizona Elk Like to Eat for Dinner
What Elk Like to Eat
If you can locate areas that hold an elk's favorite food, then just pull up
a chair and wait. They'll be there. Elk are grazers. They eat 1/3rd of the amount
of food that cattle will eat, but that's still a lot of food. The area they favor will
be green, wet, and safe. It is common for solitary bulls to work a relatively small area
where small openings provide plenty of forage near ponds and small seeps. Creeks
and willows are also very popular areas. Get away from roads and people.
Get a good topographic map that shows springs and creeks. Elk are large animals and
need water everyday.
If you are lucky enough to chase elk on private property or observe them in a Federal
or State park then the rules change a little but their diet remains the same.
Elk will eat aspen bark, aspen leaves and all the grass around the Willows
near creeks. Under Aspens and Willows many times you'll notice all the grass from
the area has been nibbled down to almost nothing.
Grasses are one of the most favorite foods elk will eat. There are over 20 types of
grasses that grow wild in Arizona. Elk have a four-chambered stomach. That allows
them to eat just about anything they see and re-chew it later. Think of it as a buffet.
If you could you'd eat a little bit of everything you would, and taste it later. You'd
just stuff yourself full then recline in your favorite chair and nap or watch TV.
Elk eat like the world is their buffet. They eat all they can then they go lie
down and re-chew their food into smaller pieces. Since they re-chew their food
they can eat things like aspen bark, willow stems and pine needles. The nutritional
value depends on the plant. Elk also eat service berries (a red berry that ripens
in the fall) and the tops of elk thistle (a round, tan, dry, spiked bulb that was
once purple in the spring).
Menu of an Elk's Favorite Things to Eat:
Elk like to eat Elkweed (plant)
Elk like to eat New Growth Pine Needles
Elk like to eat Rough Fescues (grass)
Elk like to Timothy (grass)
Elk like to eat Needle and thread (grass)
Elk like to eat Bluegrass
Elk like to eat Elk Sedge
Elk like to eat Sweet Clover (flowering plant)
Elk like to eat Beargrass
Elk like to eat Lupine
Elk like to eat Utah Sweetvetch
Elk like to eat Arrowleaf Groundsel
Elk like to eat Aspen Leaves and Bark
Elk like to eat Serviceberry
Elk like to eat Chokecherry
Elk like to eat Bitterbrush
Elk like to Willow Trees and the Grass Growing Underneath Them
Elk like to eat Sagebrush
Elk like to eat Mountain Mahogany
Elk like to eat Aquatic plants such as the center of cattail stems
Elk like to eat Elk Thistle
(Elk just eat the round top of
the plant when it dries up in the fall)