What We're Working on Now
Pacific Southwest Research Station (PSW) Sugar Pine Fisher Project Update
March 15th, 2014
By: Tessa Smith
Things have been moving right along here on the Sugar Pine fisher project since our last update. The project transitioned smoothly from UC Berkeley SNAMP project to the PSW research branch of the Forest Service in November of last year, and we have secured funding through 2016 to continue with our research.
Trapping Season: Today concluded our 7th successful trapping season. With our study area slightly scaled down to encompass solely the Key Watershed area, we were able to capture 14 fishers (6 males and 8 females), and safely fit them with radio tracking collars to monitor their locations and daily activity patterns.
To date, the study has collared a total of 113 fishers: 48 males and 65 females.
Denning Season: In the next few weeks, we are eagerly awaiting the denning season; when the female fishers will be settling into their various natal and maternal trees, to give birth and raise their kits. Our crew will be closely monitoring them via ground and aerial telemetry. Once the den trees have been identified, we will closely monitor the activity of the females and their kits.
Camera Surveys: We are roughly halfway through our Key Watershed camera surveys for year seven of the study. These cameras are placed randomly in the 134, 1 km² grids that make up the watershed. We continue to use these cameras to detect fisher presence and absence. This data is especially useful for the future management of the forest, as we observe fisher response to a variety of fuels treatments that have been conducted over the last few years.
Carcass Retrieval: In 2013 we had a total of 12 collared fisher deaths (8 males and 4 females). On February 26th, one of our largest males was found dead, just outside of the Key Watershed area, making this our first mortality of 2014. Thanks to our stellar crew in the air and on the ground we were able to recover his carcass very soon after he died. The carcass was fully intact, and he did not appear to have been killed by a predator, but we will need to wait for an official necropsy to determine the cause of death.
Aerial Telemetry: With the help of the Pacific Southwest Regional Aviation Group the fisher study continues to be supported with five aerial telemetry flights per week. One of those weekly flights now goes to support fisher research based out of the Dinkey Creek Work Center, near Shaver Lake, CA.
- Fisher Team Update in March 2014
- New Fisher Team Science Briefs posted
- SNAMP Pub #23: Impacts of rodenticide and insecticide toxicants from marijuana cultivation sites on fisher survival rates in the Sierra National Forest, California
- SNAMP Pub #22: An evaluation of a weaning index for wild fishers (Pekania [Martes] pennanti) in California
- SNAMP Pub #19: The use of radiotelemetry in Martes research: techniques and technologies
- $25,000 awarded by Chukchansi Tribe to help clean up marijuana grow sites on the Sierra National Forest
- Oct 23 2013 - Fisher Wildlife Team Webinar Presentation
- Fisher Team Webinar Update
- October 2013 Fisher Team Update
- The Federal Government’s Shut Down Affects the Use of the SNAMP Fisher Team’s Plane
- A New Science Brief: Social Media on Fisher Sock Drive
- SNAMP PUB #15: Using Social Media to Involve the Public in Wildlife Research—the SNAMP Fisher Sock Collection Drive
- Sac Bee: Pot grow sites' poisons cited in fishers' survival struggles
- July 2013 update on the SNAMP Fisher Team
- Green Blog: Roadkill is a serious threat to rare wildlife populations
- May 2013 update on the SNAMP Fisher Team
- Dr. Sweitzer has resigned from SNAMP
- News about the Fisher Team
- March 2013 update on the SNAMP Fisher Team
- We've added two new Science Briefs from the Fisher Team
- SNAMP PUB #17: Anticoagulant Rodenticides on our Public and Community Lands: Spatial Distribution of Exposure and Poisoning of a Rare Forest Carnivore
- SNAMP PUB #10: Canine distemper in an isolated population of fishers (Martes pennanti) from California
- Fisher Presentation at Yosemite Area Audubon Society
- Fisher Team update, Feb 2013
- We've added two new Science Briefs: Fisher and Biomass related
- Update on the Fisher Sock Drive!
- Owl Team response to questions from Steve Brink, 10/4/2012
- Questions for SNAMP Owl Team
- Owl team response to questions from Steve Brink
- New updates from the Fisher team
- Forest Research and Outreach Blog on Current Status of SNAMP
- SNAMP status and funding update
- Thanks for the socks!
- Green Blog on Socks Drive for Fisher Research
- Dr. Reginald Barrett resigns from SNAMP
- Wildlife Information Repositories
- Fisher Monitoring Season
- Fisher Den Video
- Fisher den found in Yosemite
- Anticoagulant Rodenticides and Fishers
- Fall 2010 Newsletter: Vol 4. No. 2 - Fisher Team
- Fisher Kit Blog
- UC researchers rescue 5 orphan fisher kits
- Fisher Camera Trap Grids, as of 7-24-08
- Fire update (7-16-08)