Seven years ago, Wayne Storman had an idea to raise elk and sell their antlers for medicinal purposes. The venture never took off, but he kept the herd as family pets at his Lisbon Falls home.
"It is incredibly expensive to feed and care for them, but I have great neighbors who often drive over and dump a bucket loader full of produce that can no longer be sold for one reason or another," he said.
"They love the clover growing just past their reach," he said while picking up a handful and feeding it to the well mannered beauties. However, hay is the staple of their diet.
Storman said people regularly drive past and turn around at the end of his road to get their dose of smiles.
" I love to watch them smile as they slow down. Some get out and feed them. They love that," he said.
"They seem to have a soothing affect on people," he said of the animals.
Because of the economic times, Storman will be forced to sell off part of the herd this winter. It will be a difficult decision to decide who stays and who goes, he said.
He considered selling them all, but they've become such a fixture in the community he could not deprive people who have made them a part of their lives, too, he said.