A study is underway in the southwest Crown of the Continent ecosystem that attempts to gather more information on smaller, elusive predators such as wolverine, lynx and fisher . . .
A compact disc dangling from the branch of a lodgepole pine catches the morning sunlight and mimics the flash of a snowshoe hare, while the hindquarters of a road-kill deer wired to a nearby bear-rub tree will lure in a suite of small, elusive carnivores that range in the Swan Valley.
Wolverine, lynx and fisher will visit the “bait station,” which bristles with gun bore brushes that collect clumps of the critters’ fur. Subsequent DNA testing, to be completed this summer, will identify the individual animals and help establish a baseline for population and distribution of the three target species, as well as other small carnivores that sniff out the carrion – bobcat, coyote, fox, pine martens, and weasel.