April 20, 2018
WATCH: Stan Gehrt on McGraw’s Coyote Work
Dr. Stan Gehrt, director of McGraw’s Center for Wildlife Research, recently spoke to the Fox River Ecosystem Partnership about his work studying urban coyotes in the Chicago area. The study is the longest ongoing survey of its kind, and has generated worldwide media coverage and acclaim.

To learn more about the Urban Coyote Project, visit www.urbancoyoteresearch.com  , a web-based resource for everything urban coyote.

The website features details on the coyote study, snapshot information about some of the coyotes being tracked, and general information about coyotes, particularly advice about avoiding conflicts with them.

In addition, the site has links to news coverage about the project.
A Wild Year for Whooping Crane Recovery
By Lacey McCormick/nwf.org
Photo by Tom Benson/flickr
The whooping crane is one of North America’s most majestic birds. Standing five feet tall, with a seven-foot wingspan, the bird’s snow white plumage, black legs, and red spot on its head make it unmistakable.

The whooping crane is also one of the nation’s most famous comeback stories. As many as  20,000 whooping cranes  were once found throughout North America. But by 1941, habitat loss and unregulated hunting—in part for the birds’ plumage—had reduced the whooping crane’s numbers to less than two dozen individuals in the wild.

Despite the strong upward trend in recent years, whooping cranes as a species remain at very real risk of extinction and several events in the past year highlighted the ongoing risks to whooping cranes’ continued recovery.
Mississippi River Can No Longer Keep Up with Land Loss
By Sara Sneath/nola.org
Photo by Green Fire Productions/twitter
Over a thousand years, the Mississippi River built nearly 4,000 square miles of land -- at a pace of two to three square miles per year. But the river is no longer able to keep up with rapid land loss in its delta, according to a study published in  Science Advances  that concludes land loss will continue despite the state's attempts to regrow the delta. 

The finding could have serious implications for many aspects of life that rely on the delta, from ship commerce on the river and offshore oil and gas exploration to wildlife habitats. Wetlands also buffer coastal communities from storm surge.

"Considering recent land loss rates in combination with the global sea level rise acceleration, net loss in the modern delta will likely continue regardless of coastal restoration strategies, ultimately producing a deltaic landscape that will be very different from the present one," according to  the study .
Wisconsin to Hold its 1st Managed Elk Hunt
By Ken Krall/wxpr.org
Photo by Marcin Chady/flickr
Following more than 22 years of elk management and reintroduction efforts, 2018 will mark Wisconsin's first-ever managed elk hunt.

Elk died out in Wisconsin in the 1800s due to over-hunting and a rapid decline in habitat. Historic records show elk once inhabited at least 50 of the state's 72 counties. An attempt at bringing elk back to the state in the 1930s failed because of poaching and the last four elk were reportedly killed in 1948.

The DNR's Kevin Wallenfang says the herd growth is a success story...

"....Wisconsin has never had a managed elk hunt before so this is an historic event. It's really the culmination of a couple of decades of elk reintroduction in the state. We consider this a great conservation success story and we anticipate our elk population is going to grow over the years and we're going to offer more hunting opportunity, but you have to start somewhere.”
What to do When Trash Fish Turn Trendy?
By Chris Macaluso/TRCP
Photo by Fishes of Georgia/flickr
My brother Joey and I were weird, I guess. When we were kids, we loved to fish for sheepshead, which, at the time, were generally thought to be a “trash” fish and were despised by most Louisiana anglers.
Sheepshead are ugly by any objective standard. Some charter guides I knew when I was in my teens refused to even put them in the ice chest, for fear that they would wind up on the cleaning table along with the better speckled trout and redfish.

But I never agreed with sheepshead getting a bad rap.

Then, about 15 years ago, sheepshead started showing up on restaurant menus under the pseudonym “bay snapper.” Suddenly, a bunch of anglers who would never have kept an ugly, stubborn sheepshead were raving about how tasty their fish-of-the-day lunch special was.

Now, pretty much every restaurant in South Louisiana has sheepshead on the menu or as a fresh-fish special. I guess the cliché about one man’s trash being another man’s treasure applies.
"I go to nature every day for inspiration in the day’s work.”

- Frank Lloyd Wright
To read past McGraw Reports click here.