Authorities finished removing more than 4,000 marijuana plants from a Mount Charleston pot farm Thursday morning — and then put them back in the ground.
Judy Suing, a U.S. Forest Service spokeswoman, said the plants from the $23 million pot farm have been buried in a gravel pit at an undisclosed location.
No suspects had been identified or arrested .
Several other agencies, including the Metropolitan Police Department and Drug Enforcement Administration, participated in the eradication of the 4-acre pot farm in the Deer Creek area between Kyle and Lee canyons.
Officers began working before dawn on Wednesday.
The plants were cut, baled and airlifted out of the dense foliage. They were then loaded onto trailers and taken away.
The discovery of the pot farms shocked local law enforcement, who were surprised growers found enough water to irrigate the large-scale operation.
Six or seven other farms already have been identified and will be destroyed in the coming months, officials said.
Contact reporter Mike Blasky at firstname.lastname@example.org or 702-383-0283.