Winter Severity and Wolf Predation on
a Formerly Wolf-free Elk Herd

 

June 7, 2002, addition June 11


With all the controversy over wolves and elk on the Yellowstone Northern Range, here is a scientific article, rather than speculation and casual observation.

The details are very interesting, but in sum the researchers found Yellowstone wolf-elk predation and the interaction with the severity of the winter was the same as found by researchers studying other areas with wolves and elk. The severity of the winter was more important than the fact that the elk, at the time of the study, were naive about wolves.

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Winter Severity and Wolf Predation on a Formerly Wolf-free Elk Herd.

By L. David Mech, Douglas W. Smith, Kerry M. Murphy, and Daniel R. MacNulty. Journal of Wildlife Management 65(4):998-1003.
Added June 11. Here is a newspaper story on the study. Winter snow, not wolves, key to elk survival, study says. By Mike Stark. Gazette Wyoming Bureau.

 


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