Wildlife Co-existence and Ecology
The Centennial Valley is a biologically productive landscape home to a dozen large ranch operations, the Montana based chapter of The Nature Conservancy, Red Rock Lakes National Wildlife Refuge, as well as wolves, bears, elk, antelope, moose, trumpeter swans, sage grouse and 240+ bird species. Centennial Valley’s 385,000 acres function as one of the last intact corridors connecting wildlife in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. The Valley also serves as summer range for over 12,000 cattle.
Given the diverse and dynamic ways the Valley is shared, in 2014, the Centennial Valley Association began a project that sought to monitor and track multiple species of wildlife across the valley in effort to minimize wildlife/livestock conflicts. Ranchers and other landowners used the information obtained by the program to make decisions that benefited their livestock, land and wildlife while maintaining sustainable ranching business across the landscape. The goals of this program are to:
- Identify wildlife species in and around the Centennial Valley.
- Monitor wildlife presence and activity in areas commonly or currently used by livestock and humans throughout the grazing season in order to reduce the risk of livestock stress and losses for Centennial area ranchers.
- Frequently communicate and share information on wildlife activity and issues, in the Valley and surrounding landscapes, between all landowners and state or federal agencies that are interested.
- Work with ranchers to implement proactive and preventative tools on the ranch to help deter wildlife from coming in contact with livestock and to help protect livestock when they are encountered by large predators.
- Range Rider
- Communication Hub
- Valley Issues
- Broader Wildlife Issues
- Sage Grouse and Arctic Grayling
- Bison Migration
- Hunting Regulations
- Landowner Outreach and Participation
How We Measure Success
- Trusted messenger for residents, providing accurate, up to date information
- Reduced numbers of depredations, overall loss percentages, minimize unconfirmed losses, reduce known deaths
- Residents and landowners better understand predator movements and have access to resources to reduce and avoid conflicts