Wildlife Management

"The National Park Service will preserve and protect the natural resources, processes, systems, and values of units of the national park system in an unimpaired condition to perpetuate their inherent integrity and to provide present and future generations with the opportunity to enjoy them."
- National Park Service Management Policies, 2006

 

Overview

Resource management is a fundamental function of the National Park Service. Theodore Roosevelt National Park uses a science-based approach to protect the park's resources. Resource management extends to a number of interrelated areas of interest including:

Wildlife Management

Park service management philosophy allows for self-regulation of ecosystems within the the park whenever possible. With the absence of many natural predators, species such as bison, elk and feral horses must be actively managed by the park. Roundups, culling, and contraception methods are all utilized to manage animal populations.

Proactive and research-based approaches to wildlife management help establish and maintain the wildlife visitors enjoy in the park today. Native animals including pronghorn, elk, bighorn sheep, and bison have all been successfully reintroduced in the park since its establishment in 1947. A team of scientists, geographic information systems technicians, and resource management professionals work together to better understand the park's wildlife and the issues affecting them. These issues include:

  • population dynamics
  • wildlife movement and distribution
  • impacts on vegetation

The park has active management programs for its several large mammal populations. You can learn specifics of these programs by clicking on the links below:

Park Fence

Under North Dakota state law, livestock animals are not permitted to "run at large." Livestock animals include bison, cattle and horses. The South and North Units of the park are fenced to prohibit the movement of these animals across park boundaries. Incursions by these animals onto private lands should be reported to the park. Other animals including deer, elk, and pronghorn are able to pass over, under, or through the fence.

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