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Seasonal Migrations Topic of Presentation at UW Research Center July 21

July 14, 2016
woman kneeling in the snow, working on a sedated animal
Sarah Dewey will discuss mule deer migration patterns in the Jackson Hole area July 21 as part of the Harlow Summer Seminars at the University of Wyoming-National Park Service Research Center at the AMK Ranch. (Sarah Dewey Photo)

Tracking where mule deer go between summer and winter months in the Jackson Hole area is the topic of the Harlow Summer Seminars Thursday, July 21, at the University of Wyoming-National Park Service (UW-NPS) Research Center. The center is located at the AMK Ranch in Grand Teton National Park.

Sarah Dewey, Grand Teton National Park wildlife biologist, will discuss “Oh, the places they’ll go! Seasonal migrations of Grand Teton mule deer” at 6:30 p.m. at the AMK Ranch, located north of Leeks Marina. A barbecue, at a cost of $5 per person, will take place at 5:30 p.m. Reservations are not required. For more information, call the UW-NPS Research Center at (307) 543-2463.

Most Wyoming ungulates, including mule deer, move seasonally between low elevation winter ranges and, generally, high elevation summer ranges, Dewey says. This enables mule deer that summer in Grand Teton National Park to take advantage of abundant summertime forage in Jackson Hole and the Teton Range, but escape the deep snows and severe weather that winter brings to the region.

Until recently, it was not known where mule deer that spend the summer in Grand Teton go for the winter. Location data collected using global positioning system radio collars has revealed that these mule deer trek to at least five different wintering areas in two states. Dewey will present details of the “places they’ll go” -- how high, how fast and how far -- when mule deer move back and forth between seasonal ranges. She also will explain the challenges ahead for ensuring the long-term conservation of these migration routes.

Dewey’s research focuses on predator-prey ecology and animal movements, and spatial ecology, including migrations. Her work in Jackson Hole, since 2003, includes investigations of elk, moose, pronghorn, bighorn sheep, mountain goats, mesocarnivores, wildlife-vehicle collisions, and wolf pack dynamics and predation patterns.

She has collaborated on many of these projects with individuals in the private sector, academia and other government organizations. Dewey is a graduate of Colby College in Maine and Colorado State University, where she earned a master’s degree in wildlife biology.

The UW-NPS Research Center provides a base for university faculty members and government scientists from throughout North America to conduct research in the diverse aquatic and terrestrial environments of Grand Teton National Park and the greater Yellowstone area.

For more information about the Harlow Summer Seminars, contact Michael Dillon at (307) 543-2463 or Michael.Dillon@uwyo.edu.


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