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The Trophic Cascade from the Gray Wolf

The Canyon Wolf Pack alpha pair lead their pups along a ridge near Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park.

I won’t waste your time in discussing political agendas and biases for and against the gray wolf. We all know that it is a controversial species that many feel is not at all welcome in nature, despite the fact that it has been an integral part of that very nature for tens of thousands of years. Virtually all of the biases against these mystical creatures comes from a simple misunderstanding of their very nature. In previous posts, I have discussed at length why more wolves are needed across the country and dissected the bias from both standpoints. One key factor I have never laid out in full detail, however, is the trophic cascade of events that happens once wolves reestablish a healthy presence in their chosen environment. – Continue reading

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12 Favorite Photos from 2012

As always, clicking on an image will bring you to a higher quality version.

January


Hoar frost clings to trees along the Snake River on a chilly January morning in Grand Teton National Park.

Despite a lack of wildlife to be found around the area, I was still able to make great opportunities as they arose. The winter had turned into an unusually warm one for Jackson Hole and while normally it’s too cold to even snow, rain was becoming common throughout January. Yet winter still persisted off and on. On one such morning, I woke up to -17F and made an opportunity to make the most of it. One of my favorite series of shots came from a bridge crossing the Snake River in Grand Teton National Park. Small pieces of ice were carried down the water from farther upstream as an earlier fog coated the trees that lined the river in hoarfrost. – Continue reading

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When to See Wildlife in Grand Teton National Park and Jackson Hole

A small herd of cow elk graze in a meadow below the Teton Mountains in Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming.

Below I’ve charted out the best times of the year to see the most requested wildlife in Jackson Hole, Wyoming and Grand Teton National Park. Below the chart, I’ve described the reasoning for those times of the year, as well as areas that those particular animals frequently are seen. Keep in mind that nature works on its own schedule, so even though a box might be marked as red (not a good time to see it) you can still see it.

Please don’t ask me for specific updates on certain animals. As you can probably imagine, it would begin to take up quite a bit of my time. If you’re interested in having me guide a tour to help you find some wildlife, I can be hired through Jackson Hole Wildlife Safaris. – Continue reading

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Warm Spell of Winter Video Compilation

A video compilation featuring winter footage from Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks and beyond.

Winter appears to winding down here in Jackson Hole, Wyoming significantly early. I suppose Mother Nature felt bad for giving us such a short summer last year, so if weather stays consistent, we’ll have an extra month this year!

For the most part, winter wasn’t incredibly eventful. The title comes from winter being unusually warm much of the time. There were certainly plenty of cold days as well as a pretty respectable amount of snow, but it never really "felt" like a Jackson Hole winter. As a result, much of the wildlife didn’t follow their usual rounds and so sightings weren’t quite as frequent or predictable. Luckily though, there’s still always wildlife to be found and sometimes even gives you a little surprise.

One such occasion was when a black wolf and a mule deer buck had a two-day standoff just off the highway, captivating the town. – Continue reading

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Red Fox on Antelope Flats

A fox hunts on Antelope Flats of Grand Teton National Park.

Before stumbling upon the coyotes while heading home the other day, I was following a red fox on Antelope Flats of Grand Teton National Park, north of Kelly, Wyoming. I was actually keeping track of three different foxes, but this one was offering up the best photo ops so I kept my focus there. With the Teton Mountains clouding up in the background, it additionally offered some great contrast against the red fox in the snow. – Continue reading

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A Teton Winter – Landscape and Wildlife Video

A video and time-lapse compilation in and around Grand Teton National Park of the wildlife and landscapes.

With both cameras still out for repair, I put together another video, this time using many more clips and even incorporating some time-lapse sequences. I had been wanting to put together a longer video to do this, but never did find a song long enough that fit the mood I was looking for. I went back to another track from zero-project, the same artist I used in my first time-lapse video compilation, and found the music not only perfect for what I was wanting, but was long enough to give me the flexibility I needed in adding in more diversity in the clips.

Most clips come from Grand Teton National Park, however for frequent visitors to the area, you might also recognize some bison and waterfalls from Yellowstone National Park, bighorn sheep from the National Elk Refuge and mountain goats from the Snake River Canyon. – Continue reading

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