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Wolverines the Focus of Science Pub
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Ed Cannady shot this photo of a wolverine carrying a fish in the Idaho backcountry. COURTESY: ICL
   
Tuesday, February 6, 2024
 

BY KAREN BOSSICK

Learn about the wolverine, which was listed as threatened under the endangered species list a month ago, when the Ketchum office of the Idaho Conservation League presents a Science Pub on wolverines.

The free event will start at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 8, at The Elephant’s Perch in Ketchum.

The ICL’s wildlife program associate, Jeff Abrams, will give the presentation.

The wolverine is a reclusive creature that has the profile of a giant armadillo, the grace of a river otter and the thick of a mane of a grizzly, according to the ICL. Wolverines can canvas an area as large as 500 square miles in search of food and dens, Abrams said. They have extremely low reproductive rates, not breeding until they reach 3 to 4 years of age. And they don’t necessarily produce young every year.

The Endangered Species Act means that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service must use the best available science to provide for the conservation of the species, according to Abrams. But it also determined that “incidental” catch of wolverines during trapping of wolves, bobcats and foxes will be allowable, he added.

The ICL believes that trapping in wolverine habitat poses a great threat to the rare, highly vulnerable animals, Abrams said. Trapping regulations in Idaho are among the most liberal of all western states, he added.

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