wildlife

A gray wolf was spotted in Northern Colorado this week and Wyoming Game and Fish just confirmed it's a member of a Wyoming pack.

 


Evan Barrientos / Audubon Rockies

Some state birds across our region are in peril, according to a new report on the condition of North American Grasslands.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife

Advocates in Colorado are trying to put an initiative on the 2020 ballot that would bring gray wolves back to the state. If it passes, how would it actually work?

@COParksWildlife, Twitter / Colorado Parks and Wildlife

DENVER (AP) — Colorado wildlife officials have released thousands of cutthroat trout into the wild in an effort to preserve the fish.

Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials released an estimated 4,500 fingerlings that were transported to Cottonwood Creek near Westcliffe July 1.

Officials say the rare sub-species of fish are descendants of 158 cutthroat trout rescued from a wildfire that burned more than 25 square miles (65 square kilometers) in the Sangre de Cristo Range in southern Colorado.

https://blm-egis.maps.arcgis.com/apps/MapSeries/index.html?appid=7ff7182ac6444b53b0d5b7b48210bc11 / Bureau of Land Management

The Bureau of Land Management Royal Gorge Field Office is seeking public comment on a draft management plan for 658,000 acres of public lands in Eastern Colorado, including land along the Arkansas River.

The internet loves certain things: rooting for an underdog, poking at humorless institutions, and coming up with ridiculous names

A flap over the name of Grand Junction’s minor league baseball team has all those elements in spades, which probably explains how it took over the internet this week. 

Jim Peaco / National Park Service

The last place you might expect to find a wolf is inside a public library, a place that doesn’t even allow pets in the door. 

But on an early summer day, Shaya, a so-called “wolf ambassador” was pacing the 4th floor of the downtown library in Pueblo, Colorado, surrounded by an enthusiastic crowd.

Centuries ago, the kingdom that made up much of modern-day Laos was called Lan Xang. In English: "Land of a Million Elephants."

Yet while the Asiatic elephant may have endured as a cultural icon for the Lao People's Democratic Republic, the numbers tell a story of a species in crisis.

The Laos government and conservation groups estimate there are only about 800 elephants left in the country — 400 wild elephants, 400 in captivity.

It was a warm, wet winter this year across much of the United States. In most states, this means more greenery, more rabbits, more rodents and more snakes — which raises the risk of snake bites for humans and their canine companions.

Biologist Gerad Fox is standing next to a loud rattlesnake. "Right now he's in a classic strike posture, very defensive," says Fox. "The rattle is a warning, saying, 'Back off. I'm dangerous. You should leave me alone.' "

CIÉNEGA DE SANTA CLARA, MEXICO — Juan Butrón-Méndez navigates a small metal motorboat through a maze of tall reeds here in the Mexican state of Sonora. It’s nearing sunset, and the sky is turning shades of light blue and purple.

The air smells of wet earth, an unfamiliar scent in the desert.

Creative Commons 2.0 / USDA

Plenty of studies have shown how bark beetle infestations have decimated evergreen trees throughout the Rocky Mountain region, but research scientists wanted to figure out how this tree die-off was affecting actual forest animals. Colorado Parks and Wildlife and the U.S. Forest Service found that some species suffered, while others benefited.

Jake Brownell

Colorado Springs is asking residents to take photos of plants, animals, bugs, and any other natural feature within the boundaries of El Paso County this weekend as part of a worldwide campaign called the City Nature Challenge.

Kent Miller / National Park Service

The first golden eagle in Yellowstone National Park to wear a tracking device is dead from lead poisoning. 

Chronic wasting disease is crippling deer populations in the Mountain West, around the country and in bordering Canadian provinces. It's not a bacterium or a virus or even a fungus, but caused by something called a prion, a type of protein that all mammals have in their bodies.

If you kill a wolf in Idaho, your effort might be worth $1,000. 

A nonprofit in North Idaho covers costs for hunters and trappers who successfully harvest wolves. The group, called the Foundation for Wildlife Management pays up to $1,000 per wolf harvest.

 


In wide open spaces like the rural parts of the Mountain West, there's sometimes little known about the secret lives of plants and animals. There are too many square miles and too few scientists. That's where citizen scientists can come to the rescue.

Researchers studying wild black bears have found that eating human food could have a deep impact on the animals’ bodies.

Ecologists tracked 30 wild black bears around Durango, Colorado over a few summers and winters. They also tested their hair and blood.

They found that bears that foraged more on human food hibernated for shorter periods of time.

Abigail Beckman / 91.5 KRCC

Starting in the late 80s, rainbow trout in Colorado began dying off because of a parasite that causes whirling disease. By 1997, wild rainbows in the state had all but vanished. The disease is caused by a water-borne parasite that infects young trout and some species of salmon, causing deformities of the skull and spinal column. The infected fish swim in circles, hence the name whirling disease. Ultimately, it leads to death.

The state of Wyoming is leading the way when it comes to migration corridors for wild game and is poised to designate two more.

Creative Commons Zero - CC0

A bacterial infection that infects Canada geese called "new duck disease" has turned up in the Mountain West.

Imagine a swarm of big, black birds flying overhead at dusk. No, it’s not a scene from a Hitchcock film. This is Nampa, Idaho — a small community that’s become the winter home for tens of thousands of crows. They are noisy and messy, and Nampa residents are pushing back.

 


Monarch butterflies in the West have hit a record low, according to a conservation group that tracks their numbers.

The Federal Duck Stamp Program is for the birds, at least when it comes to birdwatchers.

Parks and Wildlife officials are putting a warning out there about a rise of dangerous interactions between moose and humans. A new video educates the public how to avoid interactions with moose.

Lori Iverson; Creative Commons 2.0 / US Fish and Wildlife Service

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announced a grant program Monday that aims to improve the habitat and migration corridors of big game animals in the West. However, some groups are concerned that it’s not enough to mitigate potential harm caused by oil and gas development. The Department of the Interior has leased more than a million acres to oil and gas since President Trump took office.

Pierre Grand / Flickr Creative Commons

The effects of the current drought in Colorado are hard to miss—water levels are down in rivers and reservoirs. Hay prices skyrocketed over the summer. Wildfires have been fueled by dry conditions and a lack of moisture. But the drought has also caused problems for pollinators, specifically, honeybees. 91.5 KRCC’s Abigail Beckman spoke with Mike Halby of the Pikes Peak Beekeepers Association about how honeybees - both wild domestic - fare when things dry out…

In 2007, years into a record-breaking drought throughout the southwestern U.S., officials along the Colorado River finally came to an agreement on how they’d deal with future water shortages -- and then quietly hoped that wet weather would return.

But it didn’t.

A federal judge has restored Endangered Species Act protections for grizzly bears living around Yellowstone National Park.

In his ruling, U.S. district court judge Dana Christensen said the federal government didn’t use the best available science when it removed the bears from the threatened species list last year.

It's no secret that water is a problem in the West. Historically, the humble beaver helped maintain wetlands and ponds across the arid landscape but their populations were decimated during the fur trade and their numbers dropped dramatically from 400 million to just 100,000 by the turn of the twentieth century. But Canada's national animal is making a comeback and scientists think they have an important role to play as our region fights drought.

A leaked memo this week from the Interior Department shows Secretary Ryan Zinke wants to give states more clout over wildlife management on public lands, unless it conflicts with federal law.

 


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