Time filter

Source Type

Post Falls, ID, United States

Barnowe-Meyer K.K.,Nez Perce Tribe | White P.J.,National Park Service | Byers J.A.,University of Idaho
Western North American Naturalist

Spring and summer-autumn nutrition are the prime determinants of reproductive investment in most largeherbivore populations, though winter severity is known to affect reproductive rates in some situations. To evaluate the effects of a long-term decline in winter habitat quality, a diet shift away from sagebrush (Artemisia spp.) during winter, and differential habitat selection during spring-autumn on pronghorn (Antilocapra americana) reproduction, we assessed female and fawn condition, maternal investment, and early fawn survival in migrant and nonmigrant portions of the Yellowstone pronghorn population in Montana and Wyoming during 19992001. Mean female mass at capture in late winter (46.81 kg, SE = 0.66), pregnancy rate (0.94, SE = 0.03), date of birthing (median = 1 June), litter size (1.90, SE = 0.07), ratio of litter mass to maternal mass (0.134, SE = 0.005), fawn mass at birth (3.08 kg, SE = 0.07), and fawn survival to August (0.15, SE = 0.04) were within the ranges reported for populations elsewhere, and birth dates were uncorrelated with female mass and indexed condition the preceding winter. However, fawn age at death (median = 7 days) was correlated with indexed fawn condition at birth, and indexed fawn condition and age at death were significantly greater for migrants occupying higher-elevation interior areas during the summer than for nonmigrants occupying the winter range year-round. Winter habitat conditions did not appear to substantially limit reproductive rates in this population during the study period. Our data suggest that spring and possibly summer nutrition may be higher for migrants than for nonmigrants, resulting in higher perinatal mass in migrant fawns and reduced neonatal mortality. © 2011. Source

Ward D.L.,HDR | Clemens B.J.,Oregon State University | Clugston D.,U.S. Army | Jackson A.D.,Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation | And 3 more authors.

The Pacific lamprey (Entosphenus tridentatus) is in decline in the Columbia River Basin, and translocating adult lamprey to bypass difficult migration corridors has been implemented since 2000. We describe and report results from two current translocation programs, provide context for use of translocation, and discuss potential benefits, risks, and uncertainties. Both translocation programs appear to have increased the number of spawning adults and the presence of larvae and juveniles; however, any subsequent increase in naturally spawning adults will require at least one, and likely more, generations to be realized. It was seen that the number of adults entering the Umatilla River increased beginning four years after the first translocations. Potential benefits of translocation programs are increased pheromone production by ammocoetes to attract adults, increased lamprey distribution and abundance in target areas, increased marine-derived nutrients, and promotion of tribal culture. Potential risks include disruption of population structure and associated genetic adaptations, disease transmission, and depletion of donor stocks. Source

Stenglein J.L.,University of Idaho | Waits L.P.,University of Idaho | Ausband D.E.,University of Montana | Zager P.,316 16th Street | MacK C.M.,Nez Perce Tribe
Journal of Mammalogy

Studying the ecology and behavior of pack animals often requires that most, or all, of the pack members are sampled. A unique opportunity to sample all gray wolf (Canis lupus) pack members arises during the summer months when reproductive packs localize in rendezvous sites. We collected 155296 scat and hair samples from each of 5 wolf rendezvous sites in central Idaho to evaluate intrapack relationships and determine the efficacy of noninvasive genetic sampling (NGS) for estimating pack size and family relationships. We detected 65 wolves (520 wolves per pack) with NGS, and the pack counts from NGS were the same or higher for adults and the same or slightly lower for pups compared with the counts from observation and telemetry. The wolves in each pack were closely related to one another, and all packs included at least 2 years of offspring from the current breeding pair. Three of the packs had additional breeding adults present. In 1 pack pups were produced by a parentoffspring pair and a pair of their inbred full siblings, indicating multiple cases of inbreeding. This targeted NGS approach shows great promise for studying pack size and wolf social structure without the use of radiotelemetry or direct observations. © 2011 American Society of Mammalogists. Source

Stenglein J.L.,University of Idaho | Waits L.P.,University of Idaho | Ausband D.E.,University of Montana | Zager P.,316 16th Street | MacK C.M.,Nez Perce Tribe
Journal of Wildlife Management

Traditional methods of monitoring gray wolves (Canis lupus) are expensive and invasive and require extensive efforts to capture individual animals. Noninvasive genetic sampling (NGS) is an alternative method that can provide data to answer management questions and complement already-existing methods. In a 2-year study, we tested this approach for Idaho gray wolves in areas of known high and low wolf density. To focus sampling efforts across a large study area and increase our chances of detecting reproductive packs, we visited 964 areas with landscape characteristics similar to known wolf rendezvous sites. We collected scat or hair samples from 20 of sites and identified 122 wolves, using 8-9 microsatellite loci. We used the minimum count of wolves to accurately detect known differences in wolf density. Maximum likelihood and Bayesian single-session population estimators performed similarly and accurately estimated the population size, compared with a radiotelemetry population estimate, in both years, and an average of 1.7 captures per individual were necessary for achieving accurate population estimates. Subsampling scenarios revealed that both scat and hair samples were important for achieving accurate population estimates, but visiting 75 and 50 of the sites still gave reasonable estimates and reduced costs. Our research provides managers with an efficient and accurate method for monitoring high-density and low-density wolf populations in remote areas. © 2010 The Wildlife Society. Source

Barnowe-Meyer K.K.,Nez Perce Tribe | White P.J.,National Park Service | Waits L.P.,University of Idaho | Byers J.A.,University of Idaho
Biological Conservation

Individual behavior promotes genetic structure within many mammalian populations, yet few studies have explored coarse- and fine-scale structure associated with migration. Fewer still have considered the conservation implications of such structure in at-risk populations. Pronghorn (Antilocapra americana) inhabiting Yellowstone National Park are partially migratory, and strong adult fidelity to migratory strategy and breeding areas may promote social and genetic structure within this population. We used 18 nuclear DNA microsatellite loci and fecal samples from 47 individuals to quantify group divergence and pairwise relatedness of Yellowstone pronghorn. The genetics of this population are characterized by individual isolation by distance (P=0.009). Evidence for fine-scale social and genetic structure was strong, with mean relatedness between individuals declining rapidly with geographic distance (0-3km) within areas selected by both migrants and non-migrants. On average, females sampled within social groups were related at the level of first cousins (mean R=0.105±0.192SD). We found low differentiation of the population by migratory strategy (FST=0.019), moderate differentiation among some summer use areas (FST≥0.033), and an excess of heterozygotes within all migrant groups (FIS≤-0.017). Weak and inconsistent substructure was detected using spatial and aspatial Bayesian clustering methods. Our results are the first to document fine-scale social and genetic structure in pronghorn, most likely organized along matrilines. Access to a majority of the total summer range available to this population is maintained by social inheritance and individual fidelity to areas of use. The maintenance and reestablishment of migratory routes may therefore hinge on the retention of experienced individuals, the strength of natal and adult philopatry, and the accessibility of seasonal habitat to pioneering females. © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. Source

Discover hidden collaborations