First Chuck Jonkel, now John Craighead . . .
John Craighead liked to quote fellow legendary conservationist Aldo Leopold, who once said “we should think like a mountain.”
The philosophy of following nature’s cues and looking “at the fundamentals of things” guided Craighead’s pioneering work in American conservation, its wild rivers and seminal studies of grizzly bears.
“I have listened to the voice of the mountain for most of my life,” said Craighead upon receiving The Wildlife Society’s Aldo Leopold Memorial Award in 1998.
The mountains still talk, but they lost one of their most avid listeners Sunday morning when John Craighead died in his sleep at his home of more than 60 years in southwest Missoula.
Read more . . .
The U.S. Forest Service has a shiny, new DNA analysis facility in Missoula . . .
They haven’t resurrected Mr. Spock in the National Genomics Center for Wildlife and Fish Conservation, but they’re hard at work on his tricorder.
Where the “Star Trek” science officer would wave his little satchel and detect the presence of life on alien planets, the technicians in the U.S. Forest Service’s new lab building can spot the presence (or absence) of specific fish in a whole river drainage from a cup of water.
They can trace the family tree of a sage grouse from a tail feather. Don’t get them started on what they can tell when a grizzly bear poops in the woods, if they get hold of the poop.
Read more . . .
This is pretty interesting. A radio collared grizzly bear got close to Missoula, didn’t like what she saw, and backed off. They are already getting reestablished on the high plains east of the Divide, so it makes sense grizzles would start showing up in other regions . . .
A grizzly bear has ambled across the southern border of the Northern Continental Divide Ecosystem and onto Missoula’s urban fringe.
“It looks like she did it within a few days – looked out of the trees above Grant Creek, heard all the noise and saw all the stuff and didn’t come down,” said Chris Servheen, grizzly bear recovery coordinator for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in Missoula. “That’s good. But there will be others.”
Continue reading . . .