• Media Availability: North American Program Director Jodi Hilty and Greater Yellowstone Wolverine Program Director Robert Inman
  • Elusive carnivore, the proverbial “canary in the coal mine” in the age of climate change

NEW YORK  (December 15, 2010) – In response to the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) listing decision regarding wolverines under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) wolverine experts Jodi Hilty and Robert Inman are available to provide answers to questions on wolverine ecology and the science behind informing the conservation of this elusive and rare species.

The USFWS rendered a “warranted but precluded” decision on the wolverine listing and acknowledged that climate change threatens the species. Wolverines rely on deep snow-pack for their dens, are increasingly threatened by warming temperatures and related habitat loss, and are a sentinel species in a new era of conservation challenges.

WCS has extensive experience studying wolverines in the Greater Yellowstone region and has collected over a decade of field data. The data includes information gathered using radio-tracking collars to monitor the movements of these wide-ranging animals. In 2009, working with its state and federal partners, WCS tracked a lone wolverine as it migrated from the Greater Yellowstone region into Colorado—the first known incidence of a wolverine in that state since 1919.

WCS’s Robert Inman said, "Naturally low reproductive rates and low densities of these species make their existence in an increasingly human-occupied landscape more precarious, especially in the face of  climate change."  

Presently, the estimated population of wolverines in the Lower 48 numbers 250-300 and breeding populations do not exist in some portions of their former range

To interview Jodi Hilty or Robert Inman, please call Scott Smith at 718-220-3698, or email ssmith@wcs.org.

The Wildlife Conservation Society saves wildlife and wild places worldwide. We do so through science, global conservation, education and the management of the world's largest system of urban wildlife parks, led by the flagship Bronx Zoo. Together these activities change attitudes towards nature and help people imagine wildlife and humans living in harmony. WCS is committed to this mission because it is essential to the integrity of life on Earth.  

Special Note to the Media: If you would like to guide your readers or viewers to a web link where they can make donations in support of helping save wildlife and wild places, please direct them to: www.wcs.org/donation