From the Northern Crew:
This week was a routine week for the Northern Crew. We focused on monitoring the remaining fawns, performed radio telemetry and checked on vegetation plots.
On Friday we went down to the Scotia Range to observe the necropsy examinations of the fawns which have died over the last month. The “causes of death” that we had listed in our mortality investigation from this round agreed with the necropsy results. Last time we were not as accurate.
However, the necropsy examination and our mortality investigations are only two thirds of the process. DNA analysis on all of the swabs provide the last piece of information in concluding what predator may have been involved in a fawn mortality.
This is one of the reasons why we always wear gloves and are careful to include all swab samples that may be helpful in determining a predator. We swab areas on the carcass that are open wounds, scratches or punctures, and even fawn collar or bone fragments if nothing else is found.
Next week we will continue conquering vegetation plots, begin the next round of bear trapping, and monitor our remaining fawns.
PGC Deer and Elk Section
From the Southern Crew:
The Northern and Southern crews met at Scotia to attended fawn necropsy on Friday. The South had a total of six fawns to have necropsied; two of which were freshly investigated the day before.
Three fawns went off-air this week. We received the mortality signal for our newest VIT fawn on Monday. Amber and Avery conducted the investigation, but found only the fawn collar and no signs that predation occurred. The collar was found 50 meters from the capture site.
Nick, Ben and I investigated two fawn mortalities on Thursday evening. They were within 160 meters of each other. Both had bite marks on their necks and had a hindquarter eaten. At necropsy, Dr. Brown determined that one was likely killed by a bobcat and the other by either a bobcat or small canid.
The crew finished up the final four fences. Though, I don’t think they were ready to be done with them. Nick and Ben reorganized the elk truck and put our fence equipment back in the pole shed. Avery helped Nate pull cameras on Monday.
We also found out which two trucks will go to surplus. My truck and our crew truck were the two chosen since they need the most expensive repairs.
Bear trapping is back this upcoming Tuesday. Hopefully, we’ll keep busy between bear trapping and monitoring fawns!
Field Crew Leader
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