Joan took a picture of me photographing two bulls fighting in the kill zone the weekend before season opened. There must have been a crowd of at least 20 people around making noise and within 25 to 30 yards of the elk. A couple of gentlemen at a camp right there were throwing apples to them to eat when they rested between sparring bouts.
She also got a great closeup of the action:
We have large lenses that we normally use for wildlife photography, but that day Joan was using 70-300MM lens and I was using a 70 to 200MM lenses. Being able to photograph elk around Benezett this close is a normal occurrence. This type of elk behavior certainly does not create hunting that would be considered sporting or fair chase. Shooting (notice I did not say hunting) these majestic bulls actually hurts the sport of hunting by creating a perception that all hunting is like the elk hunting in Pennsylvania.
I strongly urge all of those concerned to write to the Pa Game Commission and the Boone and Crockett organiztion with your comments and concerns. Remain courteous and factual with your writings and use any actual examples of elk behavior that you have witnessed that supports your feelings concerning the elk being "tame".