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Study Finds Relation Between Wolf Buffer Zone and Viewing Success

posted Jun 24, 2016, 9:32 PM by chloe owens

4/30/16, by Sam Friedman,

Study finds relation between wolf buffer zone and viewing success

A study published Thursday looks into the often-debated issue of why visitors have been seeing fewer wolves in Denali National Park….It found a strong correlation between wolf-viewing success and the presence of the now-defunct wolf protection buffer zone outside the park boundary. However, the study did not find a statistically significant relationship between declining wolf-viewing numbers and the numbers of wolves killed by hunters and trappers.  In general, the study concluded that hunting and trapping opportunities come at a cost to nonconsumptive wildife viewers, even when the wolf harvest is relatively small. “These findings show that harvest of wolves adjacent to protected areas can reduce sightings within those areas despite minimal impacts on the size of protected wolf populations,”…The article was published in the online PLOS ONE, an open-access scientific journal of the San Francisco-based Public Library of Science…The paper studied the area around Yellowstone National Park and around Denali National Park and Preserve.