Restoring wildlife in working conservation landscapes
In 2018 we started a new integrative and interdisciplinary project on defining wildlife restoration potential in the Northern Great Plains. Interdisciplinary in that we are teaming up with social scientists to link ecological and human dimensions data to help define the patterns and processes that have driven and will drive the future of wildlife restoration success on this working lands landscape.
Project collaborators: Clemson Institute for Parks, World Wildlife Fund, The Nature Conservancy, National Wildlife Federation, University of Montana
Titus, K., and D.S. Jachowski. 2021. Persistent negative stakeholder perspectives limit recovery of a critically endangered carnivore. Conservation Science and Practice 3:e526.
Swift fox restoration
Over the past decade we have been working with colleagues in the US and Canada on the successful restoration of swift fox populations in northern Montana. Despite being successfully reintroduced in Canada over 3 decade ago, swift fox are rarely observed in this region which serves as a critical link between the population in southern Canada and established populations to the south in South Dakota and Wyoming. We have conducted tracking studies of swift foxes and deploying a wide camera trap array to begin to address what limits the recovery of connectivity between these populations.
In 2020, we became involved in efforts to help restore swift for to Ft. Belknap Reservation which is the homeland of A’aniiih and Nakota communities. If successful, this reintroduction effort could be key to connecting northern and southern existing population of swift fox in the Northern Great Plains.
Project collaborators: Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, National Fish and Wildlife Foundation, World Wildlife Fund, Calgary Zoo, Bureau of Land Management, Ft. Belknap Indian Community, Smithsonian Institution
Related popular articles:
Clemson doctoral student helping continent’s smallest canids return to indigenous lands - Clemson University
After 51 years, swift foxes return to the grasslands of Fort Belknap Indian Reservation in Montana - World Wildlife Fund
Searching for swift foxes - Montana Outdoors
Small canids can’t outfox habitat fragmentation - The Wildlife Society
Butler, A., K. Bly, H. Harris, B. Inman, A. Moehrenschlager, D. Schwalm, and D. Jachowski. 2021. Life on the edge: Habitat fragmentation limits recovery of a reintroduced carnivore. Animal Conservation 24:108-119.
Butler, A., K. Bly, H. Harris, B. Inman, A. Moehrenschlager, D. Schwalm, and D.S. Jachowski. 2020. Home range size and resource utilization by swift fox in northeastern Montana. Journal of Mammalogy 101:684-696.
Butler, A., K. Bly, H. Harris, B. Inman, A. Moehrenschlager, D. Schwalm, and D.S. Jachowski. 2019. Winter movement behavior by swift foxes (Vulpes velox) at the northern edge of their range. Canadian Journal of Zoology 97:922-930.
Response of grassland communities to bison reintroduction
In central Montana, there is an attempt underway to create the largest bison herd in the world. Bison have been termed by some as a keystone species on the Great Plains, driving the structure and function of the prairie ecosystem. However, there are concerns regarding the impacts of year-round bison grazing and its potential impacts on grassland plants. We are evaluating the impact bison restoration has on plant community dynamics both now, and with the establish long-term monitoring plots, long into the future.
Project collaborators: Bureau of Land Management, American Prairie
McMillan, N.A., K.E. Kunkel, D.L. Hagan and D.S. Jachowski. 2020. Assessing large herbivore management strategies in the Northern Great Plains using rangeland health metrics. Natural Areas Journal 40:273-280.
McMillan, N.A., K.E. Kunkel, D.L. Hagan and D.S. Jachowski. 2019. Plant community responses to bison reintroduction on the Northern Great Plains, USA: A test of the keystone species concept. Restoration Ecology 27:379-388.
Black-footed ferret recovery
Since 1999 our lab group has been involved in trying to recover the most critically endangered carnivore in North America, the black-footed ferret. Our research to aid in ferret recovery has spanned a diversity of topics, including the ecology of black-footed ferrets:
conserving and restoring prairie dog populations they rely on, particularly in the face of disease (sylvatic plague)
and most recently human attitudes towards ferrets and prairie dogs:
Jachowski, D.S. 2014. Wild Again: The Struggle to Save the Black-footed Ferret. University of California Press, Berkeley, CA.
Other related scientific papers
Eads, D.A., D.S. Jachowski, J.J. Millspaugh and D.E. Biggins. 2012. Importance of lunar and temporal conditions for spotlight surveys of adult black-footed ferrets. Western North American Naturalist 72:179-190.
Eads, D.A., D.S. Jachowski, D.E. Biggins, T.M. Livieri, M.R. Matchett and J.J. Millspaugh. 2012 Resource selection models are useful in predicting distributions of black-footed ferrets in prairie dog colonies. Western North American Naturalist 72:206-215.
Jachowski, D.S. 2011. The Sentimental Ecologist. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment 9:575-576.
Eads, D.A., J.J. Millspaugh, D.E. Biggins, T.M. Livieri, and D.S. Jachowski. 2011. Post-breeding resource selection by adult black-footed ferrets in Conata Basin, South Dakota. Journal of Mammalogy 92:760-770.
Eads, D.A., D.E. Biggins, J.J. Millspaugh, D.S. Jachowski and T.M. Livieri. 2011. Evaluation of a black-footed ferret resource utilization function model. Journal of Wildlife Management 75:1155-1163.
Eads, D.A., D.E. Biggins, D.S. Jachowski, T.M. Livieri, J.J. Millspaugh and M. Forsberg. 2010. Morning ambush attacks by black-footed ferrets on emerging prairie dogs. Ethology, Ecology and Evolution 22:1-8.
Jachowski, D.S. and J.M. Lockhart. 2009. Reintroducing black-footed ferrets to the Great Plains of North America. Small Carnivore Conservation 41:58-64.
Jachowski, D.S., J.J. Millspaugh, D.E. Biggins, T.L. Livieri and M.R. Matchett. 2008. Implications of black-tailed prairie dog spatial dynamics on black-footed ferrets. Natural Areas Journal 28:14-25.
Jachowski, D.S. 2007. Notes on black-footed ferret detectability and behavior. The Prairie Naturalist 39:97-102.