Wildlife

Wayward Red-Necked Grebe Ends Up at Lake Powell in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area

Whether it finally had decided wintering in the arctic was just too much, or simply got blown off course, a Red-necked grebe found its way recently to Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, where attentive birders spotted it during the NRA's annual Christmas bird count.

Creature Feature: Yosemite's Great Gray Owls

Great gray owl.
Great gray owls are not only an endangered species, they're also the largest North American owl. Yosemite National Park is home to about 75% of California's population of these impressive birds, and new research suggests they're even more unique that previously believed.

Bighorn Sheep Research in Glacier National Park Funded by Glacier National Park Fund

A $10,000 grant from the Glacier National Park Fund will enable biologists to learn more about the bighorn sheep that inhabit Glacier National Park along the park's boundary with the Blackfeet Reservation.

Tiny Grand Canyon Pseudoscorpion Among Candidate Species Listing Under Endangered Species Act

A tiny scorpion-like invertebrate found only in Grand Canyon National Park is among 67 plant, animal, and insect species that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service says might be eligible for listing as a threatened or endangered species under the Endangered Species Act.

Third Year of Fisher Recovery Program Begins At Olympic National Park

They might not be the economic draw that wolves are to Yellowstone National Park, but fishers seem to be taking to Olympic National Park just about as favorably as the larger predators did to Yellowstone in their recovery program. This week a third batch of the cat-sized predators will be set free in Olympic to build on two successful years of a recovery program designed to repopulate the park with fishers.

Grand Teton National Park Researchers Keeping an Eye on Pikas

Climate-driven change in mountain ecosystems is readily visible across the National Park System. In Glacier National Park rivers of ice are shrinking, in Rocky Mountain National Park bark beetles are ravaging forests, and in Yellowstone National Park atypically warm stream waters in summer are stressing fish. To better gauge the climate's impact on pikas in their park, Grand Teton National Park biologists are working to establish baseline data for these tiny creatures.

'Tis The Season For Birding Across the National Park System

Birds are usually the last thing on people’s minds during the Christmas holiday season. Between traveling, get-togethers, presents and New Years, who has time to think about wildlife? The National Audubon Society hopes that you will! This holiday, join tens of thousands of naturalists around the country to monitor the health of birds in the United States in general and in the national parks specifically.

One of The Season's First Christmas Bird Counts is at Wind Cave National Park on Sunday

Barring bad weather, the folks at Wind Cave National Park will be counting birds on Sunday when their annual Christmas Bird Count is scheduled to be tallied.

Tough Times or Wanton Poaching Along the Blue Ridge Parkway?

The sour economy has created tough times across the country. Whether that was behind an apparent poaching incident along the Blue Ridge Parkway is hard to say.

Wind Cave National Park Plan Calls For Culling Elk Herd To Between 232-475 Animals

A mixed bag of tools -- hunting outside the park, roundups and sharpshooters inside the park -- will be available to Wind Cave National Park officials as they work to reduce their 750-head elk herd to possibly as few as 232 animals, according to a management plan recently approved.

Could the Diminutive Pika Succeed Where the Polar Bear Failed In Battling Climate Change?

During my six-month internship with the Student Conservation Association, I had the opportunity to collect data for a field study on the habitat effects of climate change. Our crew of four searched for pikas while backpacking along the rocky slopes of California’s Eastern Sierra Nevada. We came to understand several traits of the pika that could make this elusive alpine mammal an important ally in the movement to stop climate change.

Endangered Species Coalition Lists 10 Species Endangered By Climate Change

A small turtle from the eastern U.S. A species of trout native to Glacier and North Cascades national parks. Grizzly bears. A prairie orchard. A coral. These are among the ten plant, fish, animal, and bird species listed in a new report as being the "hottest" species imperiled by climate change.
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Important Advisory to Dog Owners Issued by Padre Island National Seashore

Beach scene at Padre Island NS.
If you're headed to Padre Island National Seashore in Texas, leave Fido at home. The park is advising visitors not to bring dogs to the beach until further notice, after several reports of illness and deaths of coyotes and dogs.

Kate Kendall To Explain What Bears Really Do in the Backwoods of Glacier National Park

Kate Kendall is one of the leading bear researchers in the United States, and as such has been working to develop non-invasive techniques for gauging how bear populations in the Rockies are doing. If you're in Montana in December you can catch her presentation on "The Secret Life of Bears," which will provide insights into her latest research.

Lake Michigan, Home to Two National Lakeshores, On Brink of Being Invaded By Voracious Asian Carp

If you thought round gobies and zebra mussels were scary invaders of the Great Lakes, brace yourself for the arrival of Asian carp, a voracious fish that could decimate the lakes' native fisheries.

Group Asks Public To Support Removal Of Trout From Some Sequoia, Kings Canyon National Park Lakes

Sequoia and Kings Canyon national parks officials want to remove non-native trout from some lakes that naturally were fishless in a bid to save a yellow-legged frog. Now a group says trout should be removed from all lakes in the two parks that originally were fishless.

Poaching Charges Pending In Case of Majestic Bull Elk Killed at Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Federal authorities are bringing charges against a North Carolina man in connection with the shooting of one of Great Smoky Mountains National Park's bull elk, an animal that was one of the largest bulls in the herd.

Padre Island National Seashore: Wintering Grounds For Sandhill Cranes

While Padre Island National Seashore doesn’t overflow with college students in spring as does its neighbor, South Padre Island, the national seashore nevertheless is a popular gathering spot for awkward-looking visitors. From November to early spring, the seashore becomes a temporary home to sandhill cranes.

Lawsuit Over Deer Culling At Valley Forge Highlights Troubles Of Squeezed National Parks

As urban sprawl squeezes in tighter and tighter around some national parks, it can turn some parks into wildlife sanctuaries that create their own problems. At Valley Forge National Historical Park, efforts to control a booming population of white-tailed deer have spurred a lawsuit from a group that believes a prey-predator relationship should be allowed to play out. But how realistic is that?

Brown Pelican Removed from Endangered Species List

If you've recently visited any of the national parks in Florida, or the national seashores on the Gulf Coast, or even Channel Islands National Park, Cape Lookout National Seashore, or Cape Hatteras National Seashore, you might wonder why all the fuss over the removal of the brown pelican from the Endangered Species List.

Surveys of Bull Trout Populations At Glacier National Park Tell Different Stories

Often we think of national parks as sanctuaries of sorts for wildlife, whether it be grizzlies, trumpeter swans, or fish. But sometimes it might be more accurate to view parks as offering many native species a last stand against extinction. That just might be the case with bull trout and Glacier National Park.

Glacier Bay National Park Rangers Use Satellite Technology to Help Tangled Whales

Rangers in Glacier Bay National Park respond not only to human visitors in trouble, but also to marine life that need help. A recent case of a humpback whale that became entangled in a polyester line demonstrates not only the quick response of park rangers, but also how satellite technology can play a role in saving whales.

Wolves, Moose, and Nutrient Flows at Isle Royale National Park

How close did you pay attention to the landscape the last time you went for a hike in a national park? Did you notice the variety of trees or plants, the birds, the insects? Could you tell where there had been a fire or a flood? More subtly, could you see where the nutrient sinks in the ecosystem were? Most of us probably can't answer that last question, but researchers at Isle Royale National Park have uncovered some intriguing contributions to the park's biodiversity.

How Many Wolves Are Enough In Washington State?

Wolves have made a remarkable comeback in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem since the recovery plan was launched in the mid-1990s. Concerned that the predators will find their way into Washington state, officials there are developing a management plan. But how many wolves are enough wolves?

These Animals at Craters of the Moon National Monument Are Both Sprinters and Marathoners

Pronghorn antelope
Lewis and Clark dubbed these animals "speed goats" for good reason, but they're not only sprinters, they're also marathoners. Researchers have discovered these animals make one of the longest overland migrations of any animal in the Western Hemisphere, and Craters of the Moon National Monument and Preserve is modifying fencing to help them out during their journey.

Elk Herd at Great Smoky Mountains National Park Surpasses 100 In Number

Great Smoky Mountains National Park lures visitors with its rumpled, mist-cloaked mountains, its leaping streams, dense forests, and Appalachian history. The thrill of hearing a bull elk's bugle echoing off the mountainsides also is becoming a powerful lure, thanks to an elk recovery program that's developed a healthy herd of the iconic ungulates in the Cataloochee Valley and Oconaluftee areas.

It's Official: Picky Yosemite National Park Bears Prefer Their Meals in Minivans

Fuel economy, it seems, is just as important to black bears in Yosemite National Park as it is with many visitors. And so when the bruins shop for fuel, more and more they tend to find themselves munching out in minivans, according to a study published in the Journal of Mammalogy.
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Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Set to Work on EIS for Yellow-Legged Frog Recovery

Not too long ago fisheries experts in the High Sierra realized that if they removed non-native trout from high-elevation lakes, they could boost fragile populations of a small frog that once was widespread throughout the range. Now Sequoia and Kings Canyon national parks want to remove trout from slightly more than 80 of the parks' 560 lakes and ponds to give the mountain yellow-legged frog a chance for survival.

Too Many Deer Has Valley Forge National Historical Park Officials Turning To Sharpshooters

Too many white-tailed deer at Valley Forge National Historical Park has prompted park officials to turn to sharpshooters and birth control to tamp down and maintain a manageable population. However, since park officials have not yet found an acceptable reproductive control agent, sharpshooters will be relied upon the next four years to reduce herd numbers in the park.

Reader Participation Survey: Should Hunters Be Used to Manage National Park Wildlife?

It's fall. There's a crispness in the air, trees are painting the landscape with their colorful leaves, elk are in the rut. And in some national parks, hunters are being dispatched to tamp down those elk populations. Is that the right way to approach wildlife management in the National Park System?
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