This winter has been one for the history books. Massive amounts of snow, winds that took down power lines, and an increased amount of wildlife on our roads and pathways as they attempt to escape the deep snow banks.
Last week, to help inform our community about what you can do to help wildlife during this trying time, the Alliance joined a plethora of local organizations and agencies, including the Bridger-Teton National Forest, Wyoming Department of Transportation, Wyoming Game and Fish Department, Teton County, Jackson Hole Wildlife Foundation, Friends of Pathways, Greater Yellowstone Coalition, PAWS, and the National Elk Refuge, to hold a Winter Wildlife News Conference.
The key takeaways from the news conference were:
- People should expect to encounter more wildlife in low elevation areas this winter.
- It will take everyone showing respect and restraint to help wildlife survive this winter. Some steps you can take are:
- Slow down when driving
- Don’t Poach the Powder (visit JHAlliance.org/DontPoach to learn more)
- Keep control of your dog (i.e. comply with leash requirements, keep your dog in sight, etc.)
- Give animals extra space even if they don’t appear stressed
- Don’t feed wildlife
- Extra attention to safety for people and pets will be needed due to the presence of carcasses.
- This winter is not unprecedented; wildlife populations will eventually rebound.
While these are all important points to keep in mind this winter, in order to protect our area wildlife populations in the long term, we need to continue to advocate for improvements like wildlife crossings and development that respects migration corridors and wildlife habitat. To join the volunteer team working to protect our wildlife, sign up to volunteer with us or give a gift to the Alliance today to help the Safe Wildlife Crossings for Jackson Hole campaign.
You can read more about the Winter Wildlife News Conference in today’s Jackson Hole News&Guide.