Park Prepares To Accept More Bison At Stephens Creek Facility
Contact: Al Nash, 307-344-2010
Contact: Stacy Vallie, 307-344-2010
Yellowstone National Park is preparing the Interagency bison capture facility at Stephens Creek to temporarily hold bison the Montana Department of Livestock plans to capture outside the park later today.
A mixed group of five bison is outside the Yellowstone National Park boundary in the West Yellowstone area. The group consists of a young bull, three cows, and a calf.
This is similar to the situation where a mixed group of 52 bison remained outside the park’s western boundary earlier this month. Therefore, the same transport and release strategy will be utilized.
The National Park Service will accept the bison at the facility near Gardiner, where they will be held, fed, and watered for a short period and then released into the northern section of park.
This adaptive management strategy was designed to address a unique set of circumstances involving bison outside the park at this time of year. Any future instances of bison discovered outside the park boundary this summer will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis, in accordance with the Interagency Bison Management Plan.
The Interagency Bison Management Plan (IBMP ) is a cooperative plan designed to conserve a viable, wild bison population while protecting Montana’s brucellosis-free status. The Stephens Creek facility is operated under the IBMP.
The area around the Stephens Creek facility will be closed to the public when accepting, holding, and releasing bison for safety reasons. A map and information on the closure will be available for public review during normal business hours at the Chief Ranger’s Office and the Albright Visitor Center in Mammoth Hot Springs.
The five cooperating agencies operating under the IBMP are the National Park Service, the U.S. Forest Service, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, the Montana Department of Livestock, and the Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks.
This is the seventh year the IBMP has been used to guide brucellosis risk management actions.
Did You Know?
The 1988 fires affected 793,880 acres or 36 percent of the park. Five fires burned into the park that year from adjacent public lands. The largest, the North Fork Fire, started from a discarded cigarette. It burned more than 410,000 acres.