Field Notes from Steve Cain

Field Notes from Steve Cain: Wildlife Reproductive Strategies

Spring in the Rockies is a time of renewal, dramatic season change, and the business of reproduction among wildlife. In this high elevation, interior climate where summers and associated growing seasons are short, animal reproductive strategies focus on getting the job done through a variety of means.

Field Notes from Steve Cain: Albino Pika Seen in the Tetons

Earlier this summer, park wildlife biologist Sarah Dewey observed an albino American pika in a remote Teton canyon. This seems to be the first such record for the Tetons and perhaps for this species of pika across its range, which includes the mountainous areas of the western U.S. and southwestern Canada.

Field Notes from Steve Cain: Essential Winter Adaptions

Winter in Jackson Hole was a bit slow in coming this year, but by mid-December it seemed to be revving up in good form. While winters can be tough on ill-prepared individuals, human or otherwise, our native fauna have endured thousands of Teton winters and have developed a variety of effective adaptations for survival in the process.

Field Notes from Steve Cain: Bugling Elk

Shorter days, cooler temperatures, new snow in the high country, changing colors on the landscape, and the eerie trill of elk bugles in the morning and evening air signal the coming of fall in Grand Teton National Park. Bugling by bull elk in September and October serves to alert other elk to the status of a breeding male, in a highly ritualized and ages-old breeding system known as the rut.

Field Notes from Steve Cain: Wildlife Reproduction

In Jackson Hole’s temperate landscape, where abrupt seasonal changes have profound effects on almost everything, spring is a time of renewal. Days lengthen, temperatures warm, snow and ice melt, and brown turns to green as another annual growing season begins.

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