From striking craggy pinnacles to cavernous underground lairs, the national parks are renowned for their grand wildernesses. However, the inhabitants of these landscapes – the wilds’ wildlife – are perhaps the most beloved of the parks’ draws. Animals of the national parks, including many threatened or endangered species, also provide a significant scientific service: They are indicators of the overall health of their environments.
Conflicts with hunters and livestock were among the reasons a record 59 grizzly bears died in the Yellowstone ecosystem in 2015, the federal government’s grizzly coordinator said last week.
Yellowstone National Park bison soon are expected to be allowed to roam into parts of Montana under a plan approved by Gov. Steve Bullock, yet it remains to be seen how much relief it provides the iconic animals as they head to their traditional wintering and calving grounds.
Sierra Nevada bighorn sheep are the rarest mountain sheep in North America. After the population dropped to around 100 animals in 1995, this unique sub-species was listed as an endangered species. In the spring of 2015, these charismatic animals were released into the heart of Yosemite for the first time in over 100 years
Beavers are part of the wild kingdom along the Natchez Trace Parkway, but the engineering rodents have been creating problems for surrounding landowners with their dam building. While National Park Service crews at times have to breach the dams, a team from NASA has been working with the agency to develop solutions for dealing with the beavers.
Twenty years after wolves were returned to Yellowstone National Park, the apex predators have carved territories out of most of the park, are maintaining a population around 100 animals, and are healthy, according to the park's latest report on the canines.
How many male mountain lions are roaming Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area in California? That's the question wildlife biologists hope to answer after recently capturing an adult male.
One of Alaska’s most treasured bear-viewing sites is about to be turned into a destination theme park, sacrificing grizzly bear habitat on the altar of commercial development. After a decade of development planning, EIS and public input, once aimed at major improvements in resource protection, the National Park Service has aborted earlier plans for removal of facilities at Brooks River in Katmai National Park. Protection of a unique population of bears at this premier site is now seriously compromised, going against 50 years of research-based recommendations
Not only was the summer of 2015 a productive year for sea turtle nests along Cape Hatteras National Seashore, but at least two of the nests were made by a rare visitor to the seashore: Hawksbill sea turtles.
National Park Service biologist Grant Hilderbrand discusses the bear collaring portion of the Changing Tides Project, a research project examining the interconnections between intertidal invertebrates, bears and humans in Katmai and Lake Clark National Parks and Preserves.