First Public Fence Project of 2017: Buffalo Valley Swan Pond

First Public Fence Project of 2017: Buffalo Valley Swan Pond

Please join us Saturday, June 3 at Buffalo Valley Swan Pond, Bridger-Teton National Forest to volunteer to help with the removal of barbed wire and smooth wire fences.

Project Details
For our first public project of the year, we plan to remove .5 miles of barbed wire and smooth wire fencing in prime wildlife habitat in the Buffalo Valley. The work area is scenic and the terrain is flat and easily traversed. This project assists our partners at Bridger-Teton National Forest as they aim to make important habitat more permeable to wildlife movement.

The project is average in difficulty (3 on a 1-10 scale).

We will meet at two car pool sites:

  1. Home Ranch Parking Lot (north side) at 8:15 a.m.
  2. Gros Ventre Junction at 8:30 a.m.

We will carpool from these sites to the project. We plan to work from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. and half-day (morning) is welcome, as well. We will provide water, Gatorade and snacks. Please bring your own water bottle or hydration packs. We will take a mid-day lunch break so please bring your own lunch.

Gear: You should wear layered clothes, long pants, sturdy shoes, and bring a rain jacket in case of storms. Sun or eyeglasses are a MUST for working with barbed wire. Sun protection (hat & sunscreen lotion) is also recommended, and will hopefully be necessary! We also recommend that volunteers check the status of their tetanus shots, in case of scratches from the old fencing material. We will provide work gloves and tools.

Please RSVP to jhwffencepull@gmail.com if you plan to attend and let us know at which car pool site you will join us (1 of 2 locations listed above). You can also send questions to this same email address. Additional last-minute information on this event will be posted here.

See you on June 3!  

Wildlife Friendlier Fencing 2017 Project Dates Announced

Wildlife Friendlier Fencing 2017 Project Dates Announced

The Jackson Hole Wildlife Foundation has announced dates for its public fence projects in 2017 following its winter and spring of project coordination and site reconnaissance. The Wildlife Friendlier Fencing program reduces dangerous and challenging barriers to wildlife movement.

Public projects offer volunteers the opportunity to contribute to the removal or modification of fences that pose avoidable threats to wildlife while fragmenting vital habitat. JHWF and its “Fence Team” leaders also work on a number of private projects with landowners throughout the summer toward the same end.

Public fence projects typically occur on Saturdays usually from 9am – 2pm with a lunch break. On some projects, half-day “shifts” are available. While listed dates are subject to change or cancellation due to weather and other conditions, JHWF encourages volunteers to save the dates in order to ensure that all can participate as their schedule allows.

JHWF will require an RSVP from each volunteer in advance to ensure that we have the ideal number of volunteers for each project. Interested volunteers receive an email invitation and RSVP request about two weeks prior to the project date with the description, details and other logistics outlined. Please email jhwffencepull@gmail.com or info@jhwildlife.org if you are not currently receiving fence project updates and would like to, or if you have questions about volunteering.

Wildlife Friendlier Fencing Public Project Dates 2017:

  • June 3
  • June 17
  • July 15
  • July 29
  • August 12
  • August 26
  • September 16
  • September 30 – Public Lands Day

Photo credits: Sava Malachowski

Wildlife Friendlier Fencing Program Awarded “Citizen of the Year” in Cody

Wildlife Friendlier Fencing Program Awarded “Citizen of the Year” in Cody

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From left to right: JHWF Board President Aly Courtemanch, JHWF Associate Director Kate Gersh, JHWF Executive Director Jon Mobeck, Wyoming Chapter of The Wildlife Society Board Member Ben Wise

The Jackson Hole Wildlife Foundation received the Citizen of the Year Award for its Wildlife Friendlier Fencing Program on Thursday, November 17, at the Annual Meeting of the Wyoming Chapter of The Wildlife Society in Cody, Wyoming.

The Wyoming Chapter of The Wildlife Society Board Member Ben Wise announced the award at the closing evening banquet at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West. Wise introduced JHWF’s Executive Director Jon Mobeck to accept the award on behalf of the many hundreds of volunteers who, collectively, were recognized as Citizen of the Year. The Society typically gives the award to individuals who have made a significant contribution to wildlife management. Wise and other nominating agency partners from Wyoming Game & Fish and the Bridger-Teton National Forest saw an opportunity to celebrate the dedicated community that has formed around the Wildlife Friendlier Fencing program. The program’s impact exceeds the 183 miles of fence it has removed or modified over 20 years. It has also served to embody a community’s commitment to a land ethic that highly values landscape permeability.

In a brief acceptance comment, Mobeck alluded to Aldo Leopold’s oft-quoted mantra: “There are two things that interest me: the relation of people to each other, and the relation of people to land.” Mobeck concluded that one benefit of the Wildlife Friendlier Fencing program is that it advances meaningfully both of these relationships. JHWF believes that communities of people that come together for wildlife, especially throughout the rural West, may bridge social divides as we also clear barriers to wildlife movement. Since wildlife is a deeply shared interest in Wyoming – a Western passion – that connects people to each other, we believe that we can weave together the ethical fabric that allows a community to live compatibly with wildlife, while connecting individual communities to each other across a larger landscape. That ensures a bright future for wildlife in the Greater Yellowstone for generations to come.

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JHWF Executive Director Jon Mobeck accepts the Wyoming Chapter of The Wildlife Society’s Citizen of the Year award on behalf of program volunteers at the closing evening’s banquet dinner.

The conference in Cody, which brought together 150+ researchers, students and land managers for three days of talks, workshops, films, field trips and social gatherings, reflected this spirit. By promoting collaborative science and land management – and refreshingly linking art and science by inviting the gifted artist James Prosek to deliver the keynote talk at the banquet – the conference aims to build healthy and resilient landscapes for Wyoming’s wildlife and people.

On the opening evening of the conference, JHWF’s film “Free to Roam” was screened to a receptive and engaged audience. “Free to Roam” captures the essence of the Wildlife Friendlier Fencing program and many of the individuals who have been involved since its origin.

JHWF’s Board President Aly Courtemanch and Associate Director Kate Gersh also attended the conference, which enabled the organization to make many valuable connections to extend its reach, and learn from some of the best wildlife managers and advocates in the state.

The Wildlife Friendlier Fencing Program endures because of the relentless volunteer commitment of many individuals as well as the financial support of individual donors and many foundations and agencies over the years. Thank you to all who have made a contribution to this effort!

Read a short piece about the Award in the Jackson Hole News and Guide.

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Volunteer for Crystal Creek Fence Project August 6th

Volunteer for Crystal Creek Fence Project August 6th

barbed-wire-removal

Join Us for Our August 6th Fence Project:

On August 6th, we are returning to the Gros Ventre to Crystal Creek, to remove more than one mile of barbed wire fence on Bridger Teton National Forest land. The project is average in difficulty (6 on a 1-10 scale), with most of the work on rolling terrain after a moderate hike up to the fence line. Please join us!

We will meet at three car pool sites:

  1. Home Ranch Parking Lot (north side) at 8:00 a.m.
  2. Gros Ventre junction at 8:15 a.m.
  3. Kelly Warm Springs at 8:30 a.m.

We will carpool from these sites to project. We plan to work from 9:00 a.m to 2:00 p.m. and half-day (morning) is welcome, as well.

We will provide water and snacks. Please bring your own water bottle or hydration packs. We will provide water and Gatorade to fill your bottles, and some granola bars for a snack. Additionally we will take a mid-day lunch break. Please bring your lunch.

You should wear layered clothes, long pants, sturdy shoes and bring a rain jacket in case of storms. Sun or eyeglasses are a MUST for working with barbed wire. Sun protection (hat & sunscreen lotion) is also recommended, and will hopefully be necessary! We also recommend that volunteers check the status of their tetanus shots, in case of scratches from the old fencing material. We will provide work gloves, tools, and detailed instructions.

Please RSVP to jhwffencepull@gmail.com if you plan to attend and let us know at which meet-up point you will join us (1 of 3 locations listed above). You can also send questions to this same email address.

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30 Volunteers removed 1 mile of barbed wire at Crystal Creek on July 16th.