Regional Offices > Cody Region > Cody Region News > Retrieval of tracking collars contributes to bighorn sheep and mountain goat research

Retrieval of tracking collars contributes to bighorn sheep and mountain goat research

June 29, 2018
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Cody - Wildlife Biologist Tony Mong and South Cody Game Warden Grant Gerharter recently retrieved a GPS collar in the Bobcat-Houlihan area of the South Fork that dropped off a bighorn sheep ewe last winter.  Bighorn sheep were collared as part of a collaborative research initiative lead by Montana State University to study the ecology and population dynamics of bighorn sheep and mountain goats throughout the Yellowstone ecosystem. 

Collars are programmed to drop off by an automatic release mechanism at designated times of the year and Game and Fish help recover collars from the field after a telemetry flight pinpoints the location. 

The collars collect and store the GPS points of the animal’s location multiple times in a day.  Once the collars drop off and are recovered, stored data is downloaded and the collars can be refurbished for future use or returned to the manufacturer for a credit.  Information from the collars is used to look at bighorn sheep and mountain goat interactions, migration patterns and resource selection.   

According to Mong, there are 22 bighorn sheep and mountain goat collars to recover this year.  Anyone who finds a tracking collar is encouraged to return it undamaged to any Game and Fish office.   
For more information, visit the Greater Yellowstone Area Mountain Ungulate Project’s website.

- WGFD -

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