Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Resident elk attract wolves to Wyoming rangelands

Wolves in Wyoming and elsewhere in the Rocky Mountain West are often lethally removed when they kill domestic livestock. New research out of the USGS Wyoming Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit indicates that the migratory patterns of the wolf’s primary prey (elk) can influence wolf predation on cattle. Researchers tracked wolves in areas occupied by migratory and resident elk and recorded the location where wolves killed elk, deer, and cattle. They found that wolves stay close to the growing numbers of resident elk, but kill cattle when pasture rotations cause them to comingle with elk. Study findings point to the need to integrate the management of wolves, elk and cattle on western rangeland

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