My Montana

My Montana
My Montana

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

A Visit to the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center

Teri and I spent most of the time together birding. Teri is a marvelous birder and is way more patient and dedicated than am I.  I learned a lot from her. We did an impromptu survey of several areas of the refuge and then spent Sunday helping with the raptor survey of the Centennial Valley, which took most of the day Sunday and involved two hundred miles of driving, 107 of that on the actual count.

But we took a break to go to West Yellowstone to check out the Grizzly and Wolf Discovery Center one drizzly afternoon.  We only had to stop once on the way to enjoy a few Scottish Highlander cows. Don't they have the most amazing faces?

The Center is easy to find - it is next to the Yellowstone Imax Movie House.

The center has been established to educate the public about bears and wolves and help us learn how to coexist with them.  They take in animals that can't be released to the wild and use them in their educational programs. They also have interesting movies and displays, as well as the live animals.

I was disappointed to find that they have several bears but only put one bear in a display enclosure at a time. But it was interesting to learn that these bears are used to test garbage cans and bear spray and they certify the garbage cans that bears cannot break into, after the staff shuts some really enticing food inside. They also certify bear sprays that stop the bears at a safe distance from people.  I found the display of the failed garbage cans quite amusing but didn't want to use my camera in the rain, so I can't share the display with you.

This facility does not do the kind of basic bear research that the North American Bear Center does, but it still made for a fun few hours. (And do check out the North American Bear Website.  You can see a bear sleeping in its den, and perhaps a birth of baby bears.)

We were shunted through the gif shop on the way out.  I had to get Teri's picture on the bear couch.

We found this bison wandering in the parking lot as we were leaving. 

On a personal front, I'm in that really wild time when I'm trying to make good on my various promises to do jobs.  I still have maybe fifty or more hours of data entry, one more visit to my bluebirds, and I need to get my car cleaned out and packed up by next Thursday night.  So I may be skipping a few  blogs.  I'll get to the National Bison Range a week from this Friday, the will fly to Ottawa, Canada on Sunday to visit my eldest daughter a few weeks.

Then I'll be working at the Bison Range for about six weeks. There, I'll get to help with roundup of the bison, and put on a Big Sit.  Hopefully, while visiting my daughter, I'll get my fall and winter schedule of set up.  So far there is a meetup at Caddo Lake in northeast Texas, a bird festival in the Valley, and a Kayak Festival in Corpus Christi.  I also need to get my first two surgeries scheduled.