Beavers are Forces of Nature

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by Ben Goldfarb Like most people who enjoy mucking about in streams, I’ve had my share of beaver encounters. I was always impressed by their underwater grace, their ingenuity, and their familial devotion; I once watched a mated pair fastidiously groom each other for a solid half hour in Glacier National Park. . . . […]

Birds in Island Park

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By Lorraine Snipper My yard here in Island Park is a haven for many birds, in all seasons. In the spring/early summer, birds are in the process of picking mates and building nests. I see beautiful western tanagers flitting from branch to branch in my aspens, along with the odd bluebirds along my fenceline and […]

Bald Eagles

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By Deb Drain I have the good fortune to be able to observe a pair of mature, strongly pair-bonded, highly successful Bald Eagles. Over the past 4 summers they have fledged 9 juveniles, which may sound like a lot, but the average first year juvenile mortality rate is 50% and can be as high as […]

Struggles of the Whitebark Pine

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By Jean Bjerke The famous early 20th century naturalist John Muir said, “When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.” This is so true of the Whitebark Pine of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. We might think that threats to a single type of tree […]

Hibernation, Migration, and Adaptation

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By Sarah Cubells There are so many things to love about summer in East Idaho. But as we all are well aware, this summer has been particularly hot and dry. As I long for cooler temperatures, I often ponder the astonishing changes the local wildlife species make every year to survive the shifting of seasons. […]

Western Tiger Salamander

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By Sarah Cubells When learning about the iconic species of Greater Yellowstone, elk, moose, bison, bears, and the many spectacular bird species are often the center of discussion. Personally, I’ve rarely heard about the few amphibian species that are native to this region. But these species are actually a critical part of both the terrestrial […]

Butterflies of Island Park

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By Jean Bjerke Butterflies are amazing insects. The first thing we notice is probably their beautiful colors. They are delicate and fragile looking, but are tougher than most people imagine. Some butterflies like Monarchs (not found in Island Park) migrate thousands of miles between their winter range and summer range.  Other types of butterflies “overwinter” […]

Hummingbirds in Island Park

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Article and photo by Jean Bjerke Hummingbirds are beautiful jewels of color and marvels of aerodynamics. Their wings beat up to 80 beats per second, and they are the only birds that can fly backwards. The average weight of a hummingbird is about the same as a nickel, but they have amazing endurance, and certain […]

Great Gray Owl Recovery

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By Becky Hall On October 10, 2020 a car struck a great grey owl (Strix nebulosa) in Island Park. Fortunately, it was taken to the Teton Raptor Center (TRC) in Jackson, Wyoming where we hope it will recover and return home.  In 1993 the Forest Service believed the great gray owl’s range did not come […]