Capturing a Yellowstone wolf is not an easy task. But for the past 15 winters, the Yellowstone Wolf Project staff has captured and fitted numerous wolves with tracking collars.
Dr. Doug Smith, leader of the Yellowstone Wolf Project, has called the collaring program “the life blood” of their field research. Without the collars it would be difficult, if not impossible, to conduct wolf studies in the park’s vast and rugged terrain.
This year the Wolf Project team collared 19 wolves from nine of the ten packs in the park, and part of this effort was documented on film. The footage illustrates the exciting and dangerous work of tracking, darting, and capturing wolves. If you’ve ever wondered how they do it, check out this four-minute video!
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Once the VHF and GPS collars are fitted, they enable the monitoring of wolves -- including pack movements, predation patterns, and denning -- leading to a better understanding of the role of wolves in the entire ecosystem.
The annual collaring program is made possible by contributions to the Yellowstone Park Foundation’s Wolf Collar Sponsorship program. Learn more about wolf collaring and how you can get involved!
Karen Bates Kress
All photos courtesy of NPS