Life in Jackson Hole / Phenology

Phenology walk: April 17, 2014

Change is occurring rapidly in the valley. The elk are migrating out of the elk refuge by the thousands, and moose are moving out of the river bottoms and into the sage brush flats.

Migrating Elk, April 1, 2014

Migrating Elk, April 1, 2014

As the elk migrate, wolves are close behind. On Spur Ridge, the ridge bordering campus, two wolves took down an elk.

Elk, April 5, 2014

Spur Ridge, April 5, 2014

The pop of male sage grouse lekking can be heard throughout the sage brush flats, and blue birds have returned in flocks. Red-tailed hawks are back in the valley, and ospreys are moving into the same nests that they have nested in each year. In some of the osprey nests, canada geese have already started nesting. The osprey dive bomb these geese until the geese abandon the nest.

Bison are also on the move as snow melts in the higher elevations. On our campus, we still have three feet of snow in places. Even with the snow, flocks of robins and juncos have made our campus feel like spring.

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