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Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

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Thursday, October 3, 2013

Montana Pronghorns, like those across the West, are a recovering population that are in need of less barb wire fencing and more room to roam.....................Montana cites harsh winter weather and disease as other debilitating contributors to modest Pronghorn numbers available to hunters this year.................There are no Carnivores that can outrun our fastest land mammal................Coyotes will opportunistically kill fawns and it is important to know that where Wolves and Coyotes coexist, Coyote depredation of Pronghorn seem to be smaller than where Wolves are absent(Wolves reducing Coyote populations where both are sympatric in the West)

Pronghorn populations on a slow rebound

Even as populations begin a slow rebound, hunters in Montana will have to work hard to bag an antelope again this season in many areas.
Montana's antelope archery season will close Oct. 11 and the general rifle season for antelope will run Oct. 12-Nov. 10.
Here's a regional rundown on what antelope hunters can expect this year

Region 2: Pronghorn distribution is centered in the Deer Lodge area and few licenses are issued to conserve this island population.
Region 3: Across the region the population is stable, so hunters should see antelope numbers about the same as, or a little below, those of last year. In some areas —like the Shields Valley — it looks as if numbers are down slightly and that's reflected in reduced doe licenses allotted this year.
Region 4: Antelope numbers are still mostly down and recovering from recent harsh winters. For hunters this has been reflected in FWP issuing fewer doe-fawn tags over the past couple of years.
Region 5: Antelope continue to appear in historically low numbers throughout the region, including fewer fawns than in past years. Fertility and reproduction have been a concern since an outbreak of blue tongue virus decimated much of the herd in 2008. The disease, which is spread by biting midges, has surfaced again this fall in districts east of Billings. Population trends are reflected in fewer tags issued this year.
Region 6: All hunting districts will again see low license numbers because of lingering impacts from the recent severe winters. Overall, populations are lower than long-term averages, and fawn production also remains below average in most areas. Decreased harvest quotas are expected to persist for at least several more years as pronghorn populations recover.
Region 7: Antelope populations are recovering but remain well below long-term averages. While there is a promising 21 percent increase from 2012, it's still 50 percent below the long-term average and 66 percent below the 10-year peak count that occurred in 2006. Populations are rebounding nicely in the southern portion of the region, but seem to be struggling in the northern portion. Hunter success rates measured at the Broadus check station have equaled 72 percent each of the past two years and similar rates are expected again this year. FWP recommends that hunters head to the southern portion of the region to hunt antelope this fall.
For more information on antelope hunting in Montana, visit FWP's website at, click "Hunting" then click Hunting Guide.

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