Carnivore Monitoring Continues

By EMILY McCALL
Photos by Josh Blouin, Adam Lieberg and Emily McCall

The carnivore monitoring season continues! Interns and staff are mourning our fellow intern Sophie’s return to school at the end of her winter break, but Josh and Emily continue to learn the arts of tracking, genetics collecting, setting bait stations, floundering in snowshoes, and shredding sweet pow. Most of our bait stations are now set, and we have started to revisit the stations to collect hair from our snags and video footage from our game cameras. So far we have gotten some exciting lynx and wolverine footage as well as some lynx hair, urine, and scat samples. Below is a wolverine daybed, with Sophie looking on.

Wildlife photographer Steven Gnam joined Josh, Rebekah, and Luke in the field for a few days in the Swan Valley, pulling pro ski moves behind the snowmobile to access the high country.
 

Team Swan was blessed by another presence as well—a river otter, out in the snow! Josh snapped this incredible shot of the Swan River after backtracking it.

And then there were the confounding cat tracks Adam and Emily followed in the Blackfoot. Lynx or bobcat… or hybrid? Mixed in with lots of bobcat tracks, these were distinctly larger and shallower.

We are hoping the weather holds and we can continue to enjoy the great conditions and see some tracks, and we hope you do the same!

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