"Hey Jude, don't feed the elk" – Colorado wildlife officers sing safety tips

Close-up of bull elk bugling
(Image credit: Getty)

Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW) has recorded a set of song parodies to remind hikers and campers not to share their food with wildlife – and they're pretty good.

The organization shared its versions of Jolene, Hey Jude, and Imagine on Twitter to encourage visitors to take care as the spring thaw sets in, and animals become more active. There's also a take on Nirvana's Smells Like Teen Spirit, which you can find via Out There Colorado. All songs were performed by members of the CPW team.

CPW explains that each song was inspired by real incidents of people feeding wildlife, which can be more harmful than helpful, even when there's still snow on the ground and natural food is scarce.

"Under Colorado law, feeding big game animals is illegal because it puts wildlife health and safety at risk, and many cities have implemented additional feeding restrictions for squirrels and rabbits," explains the organization. "Those in violation are subject to fines, and even worse, could cause the animal to become sick and die."

CPW reminds visitors never to approach, touch, or feed wild animals. Instead, enjoy watching wildlife from a safe distance (a pair of the best binoculars will help), and keep your dog on a leash and on trails. If you see an animal that looks sick or injured, don't try to intervene yourself. Instead, call your local wildlife office.

Cat Ellis

Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better), usually wearing at least two sports watches.