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Fisher research in the US Rocky Mountains: A critical overview


Schwartz, Michael; Sauder, J. 2013. Fisher research in the US Rocky Mountains: A critical overview. In: 43rd Annual Meeting of the Idaho Chapter of The Wildlife Society; 11-14 March 2013; Coeur d'Alene, Idaho. Idaho Chapter of The Wildlife Society. p. 33. Online: http://www.ictws.org/2013AnnualMeetingFinalProgram.pdf

In this talk we review the recent fisher research and monitoring efforts that have occurred throughout Idaho and Montana in past 2 decades. We begin this talk with a summary of the habitat relationship work that has examined fisher habitat use at multiple scales. These have largely been conducted using radio and satellite telemetry, although a new, joint effort to use GPS tags on fisher to understand their habitat use in multiple-use, xeric stands is underway. Next we discuss our progress in the arena of molecular genetics and genomics. We note the progress that has been made in the realms of phylogenetics and taxonomy, population genetics, landscape genetics, and understanding gene flow. We also discuss needs to begin to examine genomic markers under selection to better understand how fishers that we reintroduced into Idaho and Montana from both British Columbia and the Midwestern United States have adapted compared to fishers that have native genes that persisted in the Bitterroot Mountains. Subsequently, we review several fisher species distribution modeling efforts, including efforts to project these models under various climate change scenarios. Finally we review our multiple agency monitoring work, describing what these efforts can tell us about fishers (i.e., distribution) and what we still need to understand (i.e., trends). We end this discussion with an honest critique of our progress to date on these research areas, and provide some open-ended questions to help us develop a research agenda for this rare carnivore for the coming decade.

Keywords: fisher, habitat use, multiple scales


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Title: RMRS Other Publications: Fisher research in the US Rocky Mountains: A critical overview
Electronic Publish Date: October 24, 2013
Last Update:
October 24, 2013

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