Cooperative Research Units
Education, Research And Technical Assistance For Managing Our Natural Resources
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Population Dynamics and Modeling - Cougars


February 2017 - December 2019


We will deploy camera stations in suitable habitat predicted by IDFG’s mule deer and elk winter RSF model in GMUs 33-35. Cameras will be active from 2 Oct – 30 April. Detections of cougars at camera stations will be used to estimate cougar abundance with spatial mark-resight models. Cougar detection data will be rarified so that we can compare models populated with detections of single cougars to extended models that include multiple states, including females with kittens. To provide a comparison and test of camera stations, we will tree cougars in winter using hounds and biopsy dart them to obtain DNA samples and generate an independent measure of abundance. We will attempt to enlist local hound hunters to tree cougars and obtain samples by providing them with dart guns, sample kits, and reimbursement for expenses while sampling. We estimate 36 capture events per year in GMUs 33-35 and the same in GMUs 70, 73A, 56. We will radiocollar 18 of the captured cougars in each of the study areas to estimate space use and detection probability.


Current Staff

Federal Staff: 101

Masters Students: 239

Phd Students: 154

Post Docs: 55

University Staff: 241

5 Year Summary

Students graduated: 695

Scientific Publications: 1962

Presentations: 4417



Funding Agencies

  • Idaho Department of Fish and Game


Cooperative Research Units Program Headquarters Cooperators

  1. U.S. Geological Survey