The RCMP logo is seen outside Royal Canadian Mounted Police "E" Division Headquarters, in Surrey, B.C., on Friday April 13, 2018. RCMP are investigating the shooting death of a Parks Canada service horse in west-central Alberta. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Horse was killed on the Ya Ha Tinda Ranch in an elk-hunting area

RCMP are investigating the shooting death of a Parks Canada service horse on a ranch in west-central Alberta.

Mounties say the horse was killed on the Ya Ha Tinda Ranch, where horses are trained for use by Parks Canada staff who patrol and protect national parks in Western Canada.

Police say the 20-year-old quarter horse was shot by someone with a high-powered rifle sometime between Saturday and Monday.

Sundre RCMP say it is elk season and the remote area is often used by hunters.

Investigators believe this may have been an accident by someone who mistook the horse for a game animal.

The Ya Ha Tinda is private property owned and managed by Parks Canada and is the only federally operated working horse ranch in Canada.

Parks Canada staff could not be immediately reached for comment.

—The Canadian Press

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