Read the article in Nature Northwest
Wolverines are currently listed as “threatened” under the Endangered Species Act in Ontario because of their low population numbers. There is no commercial harvest of wolverines permitted in Ontario. Over the past 15 years, we have engaged in numerous projects to address research and management needs acknowledged by the Ontario government in the Wolverine Recovery Strategy. For example, wolverines can be killed in traps sets for other such as wolves, lynx, marten, and even otters, because they are often baited with meat that wolverines also are attracted to. We have worked with local trappers to explore methods for alleviating this conflict.
Now I am leading an effort in Red Lake to live trap and track wolverines with satellite radiocollars. Using these radiocollars, we were able to document a male wolverine moving 200 km from Red Lake into Woodland Caribou Provincial Park and Manitoba.
Information from this project will address many data gaps for wolverines in Ontario, including an estimate of how many of these animals occur in Ontario and the effect of forestry practices on wolverine use of the landscape. For example, the female wolverine we captured last spring was denning in an area of mature forest, which is likely preferred by this animal because the downed trees offer structure for wolverine dens. The local forestry company was planning to harvest in the area but the data we collected allowed us to protect some of the habitats that were important to her. We are excited for the many challenges and exciting times yet to come with this project. We consider ourselves lucky to be working in beautiful and rugged northern Ontario and to be a voice for a such a fascinating species that needs a bit of help from us to stick around.