The fact that elk also carry brucellosis, yet are not slaughtered as a result, reveals an inconsistency in the Montana Department of Livestock’s logic.
Over 100,000 elk are allowed to roam freely in and around Yellowstone National Park’s borders. Elk hunting is also a tremendous source of revenue for the State of Montana and there would be tremendous public outry from outfitters and the hunting public if there were a slaughter of the elk. Slaughtering the buffalo makes no sense when there is always the risk of reinfection from the elk.
The real issue is the competition between buffalo and cattle public-lands forage. The livestock industry has no interest in sharing these public lands with America's largest free-ranging herd of buffalo.