Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Day one in Yellowstone!

The Wolf Conservation Center’s Yellowstone Adventure is off to an incredible start! The WCC's education crew met up with fellow adventurers and WCC supporters on Monday afternoon and within less than 24 hours we encountered dozens of diverse species. Although the official count has yet to be determined, all of us agree that the number isn’t why our first full day in the park far exceeded our expectations. The awesome interactions among the different species are what made our day so special. I won’t recount them all, but two exciting highlights presented nail-biting predator-prey inetractions.
Early in the morning we watched the industrious four-year-old “Gray female 06” of the Lamar Canyon Pack attempt making a kill all on her own. We were captivated by the intense chase for quite some time. This beautiful wolf, with looks similar to that of WCC’s ambassador wolf Lukas, pursued a bull elk in and out of powerful rivers until she finally conceded – no doubt to the relief of her prey. Once Gray female 06 retreated to the lush sage brush on higher ground, she was welcomed by her four hungry and playful pups! We wondered where the two males that comprise the rest of her pack could have been, perhaps they were the culprits causing several coyotes to yip and howl on the opposite hill.
Our adventure continued with another exciting chase after a moderate hike to Trout Lake a little further east into the park. The view at the crystal clear lake among snow capped mountains was astounding and the action was too! Two energetic otters wowed us with their speed and agility as they successfully hunted large swift trout while seeming to have fun all the while. What a wonderful morning. Hats off to Nathan Varley and Linda Thurston of Yellowstone Wolf Tracker for leading us through this wonderful park! I can’t wait until tomorrow :-)

Monday, June 28, 2010

Westward, whoa!

The Wolf Conservation Center's education team is headed to an active volcano. That's right, along with interested friends of the WCC who signed up for the trip, we're on our way to Yellowstone National Park to meet up with the folks from Yellowstone Wolf Tracker for a week of wildlife watching in an absolutely fascinating geologic setting.

It should be an amazing time - we'll try to post updates as often as we can to share the experience! In the meantime, here's some photos from a past WCC trip to Yellowstone and a great National Geographic article about Yellowstone's status as a gigantic "supervolcano."

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Red Wolf Pup is on a Roll!

Wolf pups are quick to learn, their survival often depends on it! Watch one of the 6-week-old red wolf pups discover the laws of gravity...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Louisa Willcox of NRDC Writes About the June 15th Wolf Delisting Hearing

What was the wolf delisting court hearing all about?

June 15, 2010 - U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy heard arguments on whether gray wolves in Montana and Idaho should be protected once more under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). ESA protections for wolves were eliminated in the northern Rocky Mountain States of Idaho and Montana, and parts of Utah, Washington and Oregon in May of 2009. In delisting wolves, the Fish and Wildlife Service authorized Idaho and Montana to hold wolf hunts last year, Montana’s ending with 73 wolves killed and Idaho with 185 killed. The controversial hunts as well as the state-by-state approach to delisting wolves raised hackles from several conservation groups and just over a year ago, 14 advocacy organizations filed suit to restore federal protections. We are still waiting for Judge Malloy to rule on this case, he will make a decision later this year.

June 21, 2010 - Louisa Wilcox of Natural Resources Defense Council wrote an noteworthy piece on the June 15th court hearing. Wilcox is not only with NRDC, she is also married to attorney Doug Honnold who argued the case for the plaintiffs. Wilcox raises some interesting points and reveals some of the inconsistencies in the government's arguments.

Click here to read "Wolf Delisting Court Hearing: Sense and Nonsense" by Louisa Willcox.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Dad's Day!

Here's to all the great fathers out there!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Happy Father's Day!

Remarkable fathers can be found all over the world and one of them resides right here at the Wolf Conservation Center! Red wolf M1483 is a first-time dad and he is doing a spectacular job in his new position. He has exhibited admirable patience, affection, and protectiveness, exemplifying the amazing role that a father plays in the wolf world.

Here are two videos (both viewable in Hi-Def!) of M1483 and his two sons, m1803 and m1804. Go grab dad and enjoy!

If you want an opportunity to see more of these boys, visit our live "WOLFCAM!" If you see something interesting, please feel free to post your observation on the WCC's Facebook Page.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

How will Judge Malloy Rule? This Case could be a Test for all Endangered Species.

June 15, 2010 - U.S. District Judge Donald Molloy heard arguments today on whether gray wolves in Montana and Idaho should be protected once more under the Endangered Species Act (ESA). Both sides agree that this case could affect how the ESA, the keystone of environmental law, is applied in the future. Judge Molloy is expected to rule later this year.

To read more from the Flathead Beacon, please click here

Friday, June 11, 2010

The Dynamic Duo are Feeling Frisky!

The five-week-old red wolf pups, m1803 and m1804, are growing more independent every day. The young brothers have been spending a lot of time outside their den playing with just about anything they can get their paws on, but always under the watchful eyes of their parents.

If you want to try to spot the red wolf pack yourself, visit our live "WOLFCAM!" If you see something interesting, please feel free to post your observation on the WCC's Facebook Page.

Friday, June 4, 2010

PUPDATE! Hanging Out at the Den

Red wolf pups M1803 and M1804 were born a month ago here at the Wolf Conservation Center. They're now starting to explore their world under the watchful eye of their mother, F1397.