Saturday, May 12, 2012

Wolf Collaring in Yellowstone

Capturing a wolf is not an easy task. For the past 15 winters, however, the Yellowstone Wolf Project staff has captured and fitted numerous wolves with tracking collars.

Dr. Doug Smith, leader of the Yellowstone Wolf Project, has called the collaring program “the life blood” of their field research. Without the collars it would be difficult, if not impossible, to conduct wolf studies in the park’s vast and rugged terrain.

The VHF and GPS collars allow researchers to monitor wolves, including pack movements, predation patterns, and denning, which leads to a better understanding of the role of wolves in the entire ecosystem.

This year the Wolf Project team collared 19 wolves from nine of the ten packs in the park. Part of this effort was documented on film, and illustrates how the team collars wolves in the field:

The annual collaring program is made possible by contributions to the Yellowstone Park Foundation’s Wolf Collar Sponsorship program. Since the restoration of wolves in Yellowstone in 1995, the Yellowstone Park Foundation has contributed more than $4 million - roughly 60% of the Yellowstone Wolf Project's total annual budget. To learn how you can get involved, please click here.

Hiking in

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