Abstract - Status of Mammals in the US National Park System

Cahalane, Victor H. 1948. The Status of Mammals in the US National Park System, 1947. Journal of Mammalogy 29. pp. 247-259.


More than sixty thousand animals find refuge within the National Park System (Fig. 1). Many thousands of carnivores and millions of rodents inhabit the 172 areas. Some of the species are highly spectacular. Some are rare and apparently vanishing from the remainder of their ranges where they are still subject to hunting and trapping. Most of the park areas are too small to protect adequate numbers of the species that are widely ranging. Even in most of the largest parks, wildlife is influenced by hunting and trapping or by agricultural or other practices on exterior lands. These adverse effects seem to have been intensified during the past five years, when field staffs were greatly reduced and economic conditions resulted increased pressure on natural resources. It seems advisable therefore to examine the conditions of the more important mammals that inhabit the larger parks and monuments and to try to forecast the chances of survival of the rarer and less favorably situated species.

Due to the war and other factors, information on the fauna of a number of important parks if deficient. The field staffs, however, have made such studies as were possible. This paper is largely a digest of reports which have been compiled by rangers, naturalist, and administrative officers, often under difficulty. Their interest and help are greatfully acknowledged.

Last updated: April 10, 2015

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