Today, a sad piece from Michigan about the ultimate fate of their last wolverine, a female who died last year, age 9, of congestive heart failure. She had been tracked and photographed via camera-trap by a persistent school teacher, who had only just managed to get her on film when she died. As unhappy as this is, she will be preserved for display and educational purposes by a taxidermist, who shares his thoughts about the process of working on Michigan’s only documented wolverine in the past 200 years.
Some speculate that she walked over the ice from Canada and represents a true dispersal from a wild Canadian population. Others have suggested that her genetics are more similar to those of Alaskan wolverines, which would mean that she was almost certainly a released captive. Regardless, I hope she inspires folks in Michigan to be even more interested in wolverines than they already are.
On the topic of interest in wolverines, Jason Wilmot’s lectures in Colorado were attended by over 500 people, a great turnout. In some cases there was standing-room only, and Jason was asked to stay for an additional lecture; he was unable to do so but hopes to find time later in the winter. Thanks to the Center for Native Ecosystems and the numerous other sponsors who helped make these lectures happen, and thanks to the many people who turned out for the events.
Last week saw a flurry of wolverine articles related to a study that shows that their habitat will diminish in the face of climate change. I will write more about this shortly.