The Idaho Department of Fish and Game and the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation have joined forces to buy the 1,655-acre Bingham Ranch in southeastern Idaho.

The department and the wildlife group, based in Missoula, Mont., said the property will be managed to attract elk in winter and reduce depredation on private land.Under the cooperative agreement, half of the ranch is owned by the Fish and Game Department and half by the Elk Foundation, but the foundation will lease its half to the state agency.

Under the agreement with the Elk Foundation, the Bingham family can graze livestock on the property for the upcoming season.

The property runs adjacent to Georgetown Summit along Idaho 30 near the town of Soda Springs and consists of foothills and mountain brush rangeland.

The management plan being prepared calls for attracting elk that have caused problems in past winters on nearby farms and haystacks as they looked for food. The two groups hope increased forage will draw elk from surrounding areas to the ranch.