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WILDLIFE

Bachelor Party

Bachelor Party




Mule deer are found throughout the west. During the summer, they spend most of their time along the top of ridgelines and high plateaus. Bucks commonly band together in the summer to form bachelor groups which offer them safety from predators. When "muleys" are alerted, they give group warning signals by snorting loudly then bound away in a series of high, jolting leaps called stotting in which all four hooves leave the ground at the same time.


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Blue Elk

Blue Elk




A bull elk listens to another bull’s bugles on a foggy autumn morning. During the rutting season, the sound of bulls bugling fills the air, announcing their presence to potential rivals. Bulls expend a tremendous amount of energy during the rut in the attempt to gather harems, which leaves some bulls vulnerable to the approaching winter. As winter progresses, natural selection will claim the old and weak, leaving the stronger bulls to bugle another year.


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Christmas Moose

Christmas Moose



A moose wanders through a field of flocked willows reminiscent of a Christas card scene. Willows offer moose just about everything they will need to survive: food, shelter, a place to mate and give birth to their young. Normally, the flats that willow need to grow are on the moose’s preferred habitat. In one square mile of willows, you may find upwards of 40 moose.


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Elk in Storm

Elk in Storm




A late autumn snowstorm signals the approach of winter for a group of elk in Yellowstone National Park. Elk prefer open plains and grasslands, living where land and water meet. Because of this preference, elk thrive in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Through conservation and the far-sighted protection of critical habitat, elk have rebounded from their wholesale slaughter in the late 1800’s.


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Evening Fox

Evening Fox




A red fox kit appears to enjoy a late evening breeze. One of a litter of five, this red fox was raised in a den in the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem. She was nicknamed “Patches” for the patchy spots on her front paws. Red foxes thrive not only in wilderness areas like this one, but in urban and rural communities as well.


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Eye of the Storm

Eye of the Storm




Hunted to the brink of extinction in the lower 48 states during the early 1900’s, attitudes towards wolves are now changing, due to the recognition of their integral ecological role as predators. This timber wolf curled up to wait out a winter storm is a resident of Mission Wolf, a refuge in Colorado dedicated to wolf conservation.


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Fire and Rain

Fire and Rain




A young red fox, backlit by the rays of the setting sun, watches as a late afternoon thunderstorm moves on. Red foxes live in a variety of habitats ranging from the tundras of the far north and chaparral thorn forests of Iran to the sprawling suburbs of Los Angeles. Consequently, the red fox is one of the most successful and widely distributed wild canine in the world.


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Fox Trot

Fox Trot




A young red fox goes out for a daily trot. One of a litter of five, this red fox was raised in a den in the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem. She was nicknamed “Patches” for the patchy spots on her front paws. Red foxes exist not only in wilderness areas like this one, but in urban and rural communities as well.


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June Fluff

June Fluff




Two newborn moose calves are welcomed into the world by a late spring snowstorm. Female moose usually start to bear young after their second or third year. After an eight-month gestation, they give birth to a single calf, rarely two. Born light-reddish brown, they follow their mother within three days from birth. Moose mothers are fiercely protective of their young and have been known to go to great lengths to protect their calves.


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Just One Look

Just One Look




A bull moose peers out of his watery hiding place as he glides through vegetation in a pond. Moose are found in the boreal and northern woodlands of North America and are the largest member of the deer family. Bull moose can weigh up to 1,500 pounds and run up to 35 mph.


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Lion in Winter

Lion in Winter




Cougars, also called mountain lions, pumas and panthers, are the largest member of the cat family found in North America. Male cougars can weigh 150 to 200 pounds and may be 9 feet in length from head to tail. They hunt mainly at night with the aid of their big eyes, which are the largest among carnivorous mammals in relation to their body size. While cougars feed primarily on deer, they prey on animals as small as a rabbit or as large as an elk.


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Loves in the Air

Loves in the Air




A bull moose moves through willows, where he has staked out his territory for the annual autumn rut. Found in the boreal and northern woodlands of North America, moose are the largest member of the deer family. Bull moose can weigh up to 1,500 pounds and can run up to 35 mph. During the mating season, moose have been known to challenge oncoming vehicles and even trains in defense of their females and territories.


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Miss November

Miss November




Look into the eyes of a timber wolf and there lurks a world far older and wiser than our own. This same wisdom has helped the wolf play the role of consummate predator. Giving balance to the ecosystem, wolves have played an important part in the evolution of such species as bison, elk, deer and pronghorn. As an ecologist once remarked, “The role of the wolf in the scheme of things, is to keep the legs of the deer swift.”


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Moose Monarch

Moose Monarch




In early spring, bull moose antler growth begins again. The antlers are covered in velvet to nourish and protect their growth, which at its peak, can be more than an inch a day. Bull moose may consume up to 50 pounds of forage a day to restore fat reserves and nourish antler growth. Moose feed mainly on willow, aspen and cottonwood leaves, grasses along streams and rivers, and on aquatic plants like milfoil and pond weed.


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Pride of Yellowstone

 Pride of Yellowstone



Hunted to the brink of extinction in the lower 48 states during the early 1900’s, attitudes towards wolves are now changing due to the recognition of their integral ecological role as predators. Due to conservation efforts, many packs now call the Yellowstone area home.


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River Crossing

River Crossing




A bull elk crosses a fog-shrouded river at first light on an autumn morning. Bull elk expend a tremendous amount of energy during the rut in an attempt to challenge rival bulls, first by bugling to announce their presence, then by displaying their size, and finally by fighting the other bull. In rare cases, these fights lead to the death of one or both of the bulls.


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Rutting Bull

 Rutting Bull



A bull moose stakes out his territory by showing the size of his antlers to competitors during the annual autumn rut. Found in the boreal and northern woodlands of North America, moose are the largest member of the deer family. Bull moose can weigh up to 1,500 pounds and can run up to 35 mph. During the mating season, moose have been known to challenge oncoming vehicles and even trains in defense of their females and territories.


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Sage Coyote

 Sage Coyote



A coyote uses sage as camouflage. Members of the canine family, they have been alternately revered and persecuted throughout history. Today, coyotes are still classified as vermin and are the only mammal predator allowed to be trapped, poisoned and hunted year-round. However, thanks to emerging environmental awareness, the image of coyotes is now changing.


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Skinny Chocolate Moose

Skinny Chocolate Moose



A bull moose moves through an open glade in the forest, where he has staked out his territory for the annual autumn rut. Found in the boreal and northern woodlands of North America, moose are the largest member of the deer family. Bull moose can weigh up to 1,500 pounds and can run up to 35 mph. During the mating season, moose have been known to challenge oncoming vehicles and even trains in defense of their females and territories.


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Timberwolf

Timberwolf



With prime wolf habitat being lost, the future of wolves is uncertain even with their newfound popularity. The real question we must now ask ourselves is, if we can give wolves a place on the walls of our homes, can we also preserve some wilderness in which wolves can exist? This timber wolf is a resident of Wolf Haven, a refuge in Washington dedicated to wolf conservation.


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Twins First Snow

Twins First Snow



Two newborn moose calves are welcomed into the world by a late spring snowstorm. Female moose usually start to bear young after their second or third year. After an eight-month gestation they give birth to a single calf, rarely two. Born light-reddish brown, they follow their mother within three days from birth. Moose mothers are fiercely protective of their young and have been known to go to great lengths to protect their calves.


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Waterdance

Waterdance



A bull elk crosses a fog-shrouded river on an autumn morning. Bull elk expend a tremendous amount of energy during the rut in an attempt to gather and protect a harem of cows. Bull elk will attempt to challenge other bulls, first by bugling to announce their presence, then by displaying their size and finally, by fighting the other bull. In rare cases, these fights lead to the death of one or both of the bulls.


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Wet Mountain Bandit

Wet Mountain Bandit



A young orphaned raccoon peers out from his temporary new home at the Wet Mountain Wildlife Rehabilitation Facility. Come fall, he and others will be released back into the wild. Dedicated people, like those at Wet Mountain Rehab are responsible for rescuing millions of injured and orphaned animals throughout the country and nurturing them back to health so that they may return to their wild habitats.


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Winter Sage

Winter Sage



The winter season covers sagebrush in snow as this beautiful bull elk surveys his territory. Elk prefer open plains and grasslands, living where land and water meet. Because of this preference, elk thrive in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Through conservation and the far-sighted protection of critical habitat, elk have rebounded from their wholesale slaughter in the late 1800’s.


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Winter Solstice

Winter Solstice



The mountain lion is on the decline throughout the west. Driven out of its habitat by development and hunting, the frequency of altercations between lions and humans is on the rise. This lion became a resident of Wet Mountain Rehabilitation Facility after being confiscated by the Division of Wildlife Resources from lion-hunting outfitters who were using the cat to train their dogs and possibly planning to use him on a future hunt when he matured.


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Wolf Eyes

Wolf Eyes



Look into the eyes of a timber wolf and there lurks a world far older and wiser than our own. This same wisdom has helped the wolf play the role of consummate predator. Giving balance to the ecosystem, wolves have played an important part in the evolution of such species as bison, elk, deer and pronghorn. As an ecologist once remarked, “The role of the wolf in the scheme of things, is to keep the legs of the deer swift.”


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Yellow Wolf

Yellow Wolf



The coyote has played many important and varied roles in the lives of humans. Early Europeans despised coyotes and viewed them as vermin, while Native American cultures highly revered the coyote. Playing integral roles in their mythology, the coyote’s name has ranged from “Trickster” to “God’s Dog.”


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