Yellowstone National Park

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A panel of prominent scientists are meeting in Bozeman to talk about controlling brucellosis in the Greater Yellowstone area, It’s the start of a year-long process to evaluate options for trying to control the disease.

Another Tourist Injured By Yellowstone Bison

Jun 2, 2015
Bull bison in Yellowstone National Park
YellowstoneNPS-flickr (CC-BY-2.0)

A 62-year-old Australian is the second Yellowstone National Park visitor to be injured by a bison this year.

Snowmobiles ride past bison in Yellowstone National Park
Yellowstone National Park (CC-BY-2.0)

A national conservation group and a motorized access group describe a proposed winter use management tool for Yellowstone National Park as a step in the right direction.

Public Domain

The public is getting a chance to ask state and federal wildlife managers about bison management in and around Yellowstone National Park.

The federal government's point man on grizzly bears says the Yellowstone ecosystem's grizzly population should be removed from the endangered species list.

Chris Servheen says the most accurate population estimate shows between 1,000 and 1,200 grizzly bears in the Yellowstone ecosystem.

Some Yellowstone Roads To Open This Week

Apr 14, 2015
Snowplows near the Canyon area in Yellowstone National Park
David Restivo, Yellowstone National Park (CC-BY-2.0)

Spring is in the air and the plows have been busy in Yellowstone. Now, roads leading to Old Faithful and the Grand Canyon area are set to open for auto travel this week.

Cow bison with a newly born calf in Yellowstone National Park
Neal Herbert - Yellowstone National Park (CC-BY-2.0)

Yellowstone National Park might tolerate thousands more bison by 2017, or perhaps hundreds fewer. State and federal wildlife managers are developing a new Yellowstone bison management plan and several options are on the table.

Jackie Yamanaka

Another nearly 4-dozen Yellowstone National Park bison are scheduled to be loaded up today at the Stephens Creek Capture facility and delivered for slaughter in Big Timber and Columbus.

It’s part of the population control measures spelled out under the Interagency Bison Management Plan.

Yellowstone officials held a tour of the Stephens Creek facility yesterday.

Rick Wallen is the lead wildlife biologist for Yellowstone’s bison program.

Relatively mild winter weather is bringing out the bears in Yellowstone National Park.

Park spokesman Al Nash says the first report of grizzly bear activity was confirmed late Monday afternoon.

The bears usually emerge from hibernation in early March.

They're hungry when leaving their dens and looking for an easy meal; namely, the carcasses of winter-killed animals.

Jim Peaco (CC-BY-2.0)

Yellowstone National Park has started capturing bison near the park's north entrance and bison advocates have sued to stop it.

Disease management and carrying capacity are at the center of the operation.

Park spokesman Al Nash says a total of 800 to 900 bison that migrate out of the park could be removed.

"We're doing so to be able to approach the target bison population and to see if we can reduce the potential for a mass-migration of bison into Montana where there is still some limited tolerance."

Wolves A Source Of Wonder, Controversy 20 Years After Reintroduction

Jan 13, 2015
Jim Peaco (CC-BY-2.0)

Monday marked the 20th anniversary of the arrival of 8 wolves into Yellowstone National Park. That event marked the beginning of the recovery effort for the grey wolf, a species that had been absent from the Northern Rockies for more than 70 years.

Several of the former National Park Service and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials in the recovery effort met Sunday and Monday to reflect on the effort and consider the future of the grey wolf.

Flickr user, Charles Peterson

"By the 1930s, conservation groups across North America teamed up to help save the trumpeter, of which only 69 were known to exist. Various projects restored and increased breeding, wintering and wetland habitat, including the new Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge in southwest Montana. Trumpeter populations rebounded and reached almost 35,000 swans by 2005.

Jim Peaco (CC-BY-2.0)

Yellowstone National Park officials hope a smartphone and tablet app sparks curiosity about science and the nation's park system.

The app called "NPS Yellowstone Geyers".

Park spokesman Al Nash says it helps users find out when Old Faithful and five other predictable geysers could erupt.

"We're looking to see how we can harness technology to help us better serve visitors."

Yellowstone Ski Festival

 

With the Thanksgiving holiday comes the unofficial start of the ski season in much of the Northwest. Tuesday marks the start of the Yellowstone Ski Festival, an event that draws up to five thousand cross country skiers to the trails just outside the national park every year.

“We’ve had skiers out here skiing on our trails since weekend when we got a good batch of snow," said Moira Dow, festival's director.

Courtesy of the Defenders of Wildlife

Nearly 2,000 pounds of wild bison lumbered out of a truck and down a ramp yesterday onto a pasture owned by the the Assiniboine & Sioux Tribes of the Fort Peck Reservation as members of the tribe greeted the animals with a song.

Dozens of excited people were there to see workers herd the animals into a 140 acre holding pen. Fort Peck Fish and Game officials said almost 100 bison were unloaded yesterday, with nearly 50 more expected today.

Public Domain

A herd of wild bison relocated from Yellowstone National Park arrived at Montana's Fort Peck Indian Reservation today.

The bison were initially captured migrating out of the park, and were kept on media mogul Ted Turner’s ranch for the last five years.

Tommy Christian is a 15-year member of the Assiniboine & Sioux tribal council. He says many tribes, including those he represents on Fort Peck, have a strong relationship with the animals, and have only recently been able to express it since hunters nearly massacred the entire species.

Grizzly bears in the Yellowstone ecosystem are close to losing their endangered species status.

Chris Servheen says that population is healthy, robust and ready for that transition.

Servheen is the Grizzly Bear Recovery Coordinator for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

He and other members of an Interagency Grizzly Bear Management subcommittee met yesterday in Bozeman to discuss the status of Yellowstone grizzly bears.

Josh Burnham (CC-BY-2.0)

It turns out 145 genetically pure bison captured from Yellowstone National Park will stay in Montana.

Several out-of-state entities wanted those animals.

National Park Service

A federal court has ordered a Dutch man to pay more than $3,000 dollars for crashing a drone in the biggest hot spring in Yellowstone National Park.

Theodorus Van Vliet crashed a drone into the Grand Prismatic Spring in early August. Workers have been unable to recover the unmanned aircraft so far.

Park authorities banned drones in late June.

Van Vliet was one of three visitors to crash one in the park this summer.

This is the second federal conviction for piloting drones in Yellowstone in a just over a week. One other illegal drone case is still pending.

YellowstoneNPS (CC-BY-2.0)

Yellowstone National Park is on track to have one of its highest visitation years on record.

Park officials say more than 2.7 million people have visited the park so far this year. That's up six percent over the same period last year.

Gardiner-area business owner, Peggy Hoppe, says it's been a very busy summer.

The Hoppe's run North Yellowstone Vacation Rentals, offering one-room cabins on a working ranch near Yellowstone's north entrance:

YellowstoneNPS (CC-BY-2.0)

This winter, for the first time in more than a decade, people will be allowed to ride snowmobiles in Yellowstone National Park on their own, and not as part of commercially-guided trip. The Park is holding a lottery for a limited number of private snowmobile group permits. It opened last week.

Jack Welch, with the motorized access group Blue Ribbon Coalition says it’s a big deal.

Yellowstone Drone Problems Don't Plague Glacier

Sep 4, 2014
National Park Service

A German man has been charged with four misdemeanors related to crashing a drone into Yellowstone Lake this summer. In addition to violating the park’s ban on unmanned aircraft, Andreas Meissner is charged with filming without a permit, leaving property unattended, and giving a false report to authorities in the July 17 incident.

Yellowstone National Park Spokesman Al Nash says Meisner is not the only person to be cited for flying a drone in the park.

“We’ve actually charged three different people regarding use of unmanned aircraft in Yellowstone this summer,” Nash says.

National Park Service

Dan Wenk, Superintendent of Yellowstone National Park, walks in the footsteps of 142 years of leadership in the world's oldest national park. His decisions affect not only the park, but its neighboring landowners and businesses. "You don't answer the questions in national parks by building facilities. Oftentimes, it's (best) to leave the area alone. Try to give people a great, broad experience of what's in a national park, but don't commercialize that experience."

An audio postcard. Beth Anne talks with Darryl, Nancy and Ray about their three-generation family road trip from Pennsylvania to Montana.  Nancy narrates the trip itinerary, from Falling Water in Pennsylvania to a farm in Ohio, from giant sand dunes on the shore of Lake Michigan to Buffalo Bill State Park in Wyoming. Darryl recalls an unusual encounter with a familiar four-legged critter in Yellowstone National Park in 1948. Twelve-year-old Ray chimes in with his perspective, including an alternative vision for the scenic Dry Fork drainage on the east side of Glacier National Park.

Yellowstone National Park

Yellowstone National Park officials have temporarily closed a loop called Firehole Lake Drive because of damaged road surfaces caused by extreme heat.

Park spokesperson Dan Hottle says extreme temperatures coming from the surrounding thermal areas have caused oil to bubble to the surface of the 3 mile loop that branches off a heavily-used route through the park called the Grand Loop Road, "creating an unsafe condition for drivers".

The closed loop usually takes visitors past Great Fountain Geyser, White Dome Geyser and Firehole Lake.

lowjumpingfrog/flickr

National Park Service officials are announcing a partnership with the state of Montana to consider changes to managing bison in and around Yellowstone National Park.

Hundreds of bison wander into the state from the park’s northern boundary during many winters.

Livestock owners worry about the animals damaging property and spreading disease.

The Park Service and the state have been operating under their current Bison Management Plan since 2001.

The agencies think it may be time for an update.

The Intelligence of Animals: Ravens & Wolves

Mar 11, 2014
George Bumann

For 200,000 years, humans have lived intimately with wild animals. We have been captivated by their beauty, intelligence and power. The technology of the last two hundred years - 1,000th of our time on earth - has separated us.  Does it matter? Sculptor and naturalist George Bumann thinks so.

Katrin Frye

Out of town travelers make up the vast majority of visitors to national parks and they dump a whole lot of money into local economies.

Nationwide that number is $13.9-billion for 2012. These are the findings released by the National Park Service in a report that details the economic impact of national parks.

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell hosted a conference call with reporters Monday. She said the report helps her make the case for funding parks.

United States Fish and Wildlife Service

A new report shows a declining population of wolves in Yellowstone National Park, but a lead author describes it as a result of the predators coming into balance with their environment.

“The number of wolves are here that can be supported by prey,” said Doug Smith, Yellowstone Senior Wildlife Biologist and leader of the Yellowstone Wolf Project.

NASA

Yellowstone National Park administrators say shooting wild bison with vaccine-laced "biobullets" to prevent the spread of an animal disease would be too ineffective to justify the expense.

Today's announcement means a program that's led to the periodic capture and slaughter of thousands of migrating bison will continue.
 
       About half of Yellowstone's 4,600 bison test positive for Brucellosis, which causes pregnant animals to prematurely abort their young.

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