Rocky Mountain National Park investigating illegal removal of skull, antlers – Greeley Tribune

Investigators are looking for whoever illegally removed the skull and antler from a large bull elk that died of natural causes in Rocky Mountain National Park.

The large bull, known as Kahuna, Bruno or Big Thirds, is believed to have died of natural causes in the park as there were reports that he was injured during last year’s mating season and, as of February, he was very underweight, according to a press release from the national park.

Photos of the animal — described by park officials as “majestic” and with “distinct large antlers” — were highlighted on social media recently, announcing his death.

Sometime between March 20 and 22, after his death, someone illegally removed the skull and antlers from the animal, according to a press release. One antler had been shed before his death, and the other was still on his skull, the press release states.

“This elk’s remains should be allowed to return to the earth in Rocky Mountain National Park, where he brought much joy to thousands of park visitors over many years,” officials said in the press release. “Please help the park protect wildlife by reporting any suspicious activity.”

Authorities ask anyone with information on this incident to call Rocky Mountain National Park’s tip line at 970-586-1393 or email [email protected]. Tipsters can remain anonymous by submitting a tip through the National Park Service website.