News Round-Up

Photos from Yosemite suggest secretive forest predator might be moving north


New photographs from Yosemite National Park in California’s Sierra Nevada represent an exciting development in the recovery of the fisher, a fierce and secretive predator whose numbers dwindled in the 19th and 20th centuries due to fur trapping and logging.

An ongoing research collaboration focused on the fisher used motion-sensor cameras and scat-detection dogs to confirm that at least one fisher is living north of the Merced River canyon. The collaboration includes Oregon State University’s Institute for Natural Resources.

The Merced River canyon bisects Yosemite and had long been thought to be an impenetrable barrier to range expansion for the possibly 300 fishers living in the southern Sierra Nevada. Fishers are slow to branch into new territory in general and recently have been under pressure from widespread drought and subsequent tree mortality. MORE

Header image: Oregan State University.

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