Defenders Magazine

Fall 2012

Volume 87, Issue 4


A fierce wind howls across the rolling hills of northeastern Montana as a small crowd assembles in the waning March light. The headlights of a dozen vehicles illuminate flecks of snow and point to an empty two-acre corral, where tufts of tawny grass ripple along a tall metal fence. Defenders’ prairie expert Jonathan Proctor and I have been standing outside all afternoon waiting for bison—the first of about 60—to complete a 500-mile journey from a quarantine facility outside Yellowstone National Park to their ancestral stomping grounds at Fort Peck Indian Reservation. A few local families join us—mostly staying in their cars to keep warm—but we’re too excited for that.


Catastrophic wildfires, record heat waves, bizarre storms and blistering droughts are exactly what climate experts predicted
Raising livestock in wolf country comes with a distinct set of challenges. But for five years, the Wood River Wolf Project has been helping Idaho ranchers coexist peacefully with wolves.
Feds move to protect sea turtles
It may sound like a contradiction, but John Hazeltine likes to joke that he recently put expensive, environmentally friendly solar panels on his rooftop because he’s cheap.
The elections are right around the corner. At the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, we used to call this “the silly season,” but there is nothing silly about the conservation of our nation’s wildlife and wild places.
Crop Subsidies ‘Plow Under’ Wildlife; Sun Shines for the Florida Black Bear
In the race to save bats affected by the deadly white-nose syndrome, scientists from Michigan Technological University are using chemical “fingerprinting” to identify where bats hung out the previous summer.
The Virginia big-eared bat will devour half its weight in bugs every night during warm weather months. Come winter hibernation, though, the bat could be in for a chilling reality.