Lonely Work: Winter studies take biologist to remote areas of Montana
The wolf was here the day before.
The animal had left large pock marks in the snow that formed a long, singular line stretching down the snowmobile trail in front of us.
After about five miles up this remote forest road near Stryker on Monday, the wolf’s tracks suddenly veered off the trail and into the deep snow — before quickly returning to the trail. In its wake it had left a calling card of its presence: a small piece of deer hide, cut in a perfect square fashion, giving us the clue that the hide had been used by a trapper as bait for a pine marten trap. The wolf’s teeth left large holes in the frozen hide, and every scrap of available protein had been cleanly scoured away.
“Tough way for a wolf to make a living out of something like that,” remarked Tim Thier, tossing the piece of hide back in the snow and hopping on his snowmobile. Thier is a Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks wildlife biologist who has studied furbearing animals in northwest Montana during the winter for the past 16 years.
Missoula, Montana - The Ranch Club golf community in Missoula is included in Golfweek magazine's "Best Courses 2010" list. The March 12 issue of the magazine honors the nation's greatest golf courses including a state-by-state listing of the country's best courses. Golfweek is not the only magazine to recognize The Ranch Club, the course was also honored by Golf Digest magazine's "America's 100 Greatest Golf Courses" in 2007-08.
Yellowstone elk herd stable
WEST YELLOWSTONE - The annual winter aerial survey of the Northern Yellowstone elk herdindicates the population has remained fairly stable since 2006.Biologists counted at least 6,070 elk, under what were considered only fairsurvey conditions. This year's survey was hampered a lack of snow on theground and some poor flying weather.The herd winters between the Northeast Entrance of Yellowstone Nat...
Yellowstone Wolf Population In Transition
WEST YELLOWSTONE -Wolf numbers in Yellowstone National Park declined for the second consecutive year. The decline was expected and considered natural.The Yellowstone Wolf Project reports the 2009 population at about 58 wolves,15 percent from the previous year. This is the fourthdecline since wolf reintroduction began in 1995. A population high of 174wolves was recorded in 2003. In 2004 and 2007, 1...
The Dry Season
Bozeman, MT - Montana Natural Resources Conservation Service Snow Survey officials report that statewide mountain snowpack was below average and below last year. January 1 represents about 45 percent of the expected seasonal snowfall, so more than half of the snowfall season remains. Low amounts of November and December precipitation resulted in the January 1 mountain snowpack being below av...
ByBill KampsIt'strue that winter winds, cold temperatures and frozen lakes keep some peoplehuddled indoors all winter.Butthere's another clan of outdoors folks that just grins and bears it and puts onanother layer of clothing. These are the ice anglers. Montana is known forgreat fishing all spring, summer and fall. But if a person is hardy enough theysoon learn that fishing in Montana doesn't end ...
Changing Colors: Aspen are one of fall's delights
Come fall, quaking aspen wouldn't be more conspicuous if it were a kid hollering, "Mom, Dad! Look at me!"
Robed in dazzling yellow, these familiar trees of the foothills and mountains are particularly eye-catching this time of year. Known also as trembling aspen, this tree is the most widespread in North America. Yet in the East the aspen tends to blend in with other hardwoods, so much that some folks don't even know it's there. But in the West, where it stands out among the conifers, residents know and cherish it.
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