Pitch In: Real Action You Can Take to Protect Wildlife This Winter


Treasure Valley Residents: What can you do to help wildlife? Leash your dog in critical foothills habitat areas

Deer and elk wintering in the Boise Foothills need to conserve fat stores in order to survive winter. Leashing your dog can prevent them from chasing deer and elk, allowing the animals to rest and conserve energy. In an interview with Boise State Public Radio, officials from Idaho Fish and Game discuss how frightening deer and elk (especially by dogs) is directly related to early death for the wintering animals. 

Poisonous Ornamental Yew Kills Two Elk Calves in Ketchum

Homeowners in Blaine County are being asked to remove ornamental yew from their landscaping after two elk calves were found dead from the plant’s toxins. A 2016 ordinance already restricts the use of poisonous plants, but this event is a strong reminder of just how potent yew is – very small amounts can kill large animals. To protect wildlife and pets, consider replacing yew with a native evergreen, like Oregon grape, and fence off yew plants until they can be removed. 

Despite Heavy Snows, Idaho Fish and Game Reports No Winter Feeding Emergencies

Idaho Fish and Game is carefully monitoring big game wintering in Southeast Idaho, determining that, despite heavy snow accumulation, game are not presently experiencing a winter feeding emergency. Feeding our big game in the winter is not the cut and dry solution many expect, and Fish and Game notes that the best solution to winter mortality happens long before winter: providing good wintering habitat, avoiding summer drought conditions, and ensuring game are healthy with good fat reserves before the cold season. It’s valuable to remember that feeding can also cause problems, such as matching dietary needs or disrupting natural migratory pathways when game stop to eat, so the method is used sparingly.