Wildlife Watching – Pronghorn are on the move again
Antelope crossing over
Pronghorn crossing the Trapper's Point wildlife overpass moving north to south, Sept. 26, 2016.
Herd moving north
In the fall, most herds cross over moving from north to south, although occassionally a herd will cross moving south to north. Sept. 17, 2016.
by Dawn Ballou, Pinedale Online!
September 27, 2016
For those who enjoy watching the local area wildlife, here’s a heads up that pronghorn (antelope) are on the move again and moving across the Trapper’s Point wildlife overpass in greater numbers now. Movement activity has picked up the past two weeks after being very slow during May through August. Pronghorn can regularly be seen moving across the overpass fairly frequently now, typically groups coming several times an hour. Herds can move through very quickly, sometimes taking just a couple minutes to go from horizon to horizon when they are on the move.
In the fall, most herds are moving south, but an occasional herd moves north across the overpass and terrain. Very few deer cross on the overpass. Of course, the timing of herds moving through is completely unpredictable, so keep checking back to catch a herd crossing. Watch carefully for a shimmy of white moving dots in the distance to see herds approaching.
The Trapper’s Point Wildlife Overpass webcam is positioned on the wildlife overpass over US 191 near the Cora junction about five miles west of Pinedale. It does continuous video monitoring of the views and does a patrol every three minutes looking several directions and taking still photos. Webcam administrators monitor the camera view and at times may go in and manually control the camera to follow herd movements as they approach and see paths they take to leave the Trapper’s Point area. The web camera has pan, zoom and tilt capabilities.
In late September, cattle herds are also beginning their drift migration south from their summer pastures in the Upper Green. Some cattle move down on their own and other herds are pushed by cowboys on horseback and taken through the wildlife underpass just west of the overpass on US 191. Cattle collect in the sorting grounds just south of the wildlife overpass. The wildlife overpass is fenced to keep cattle from using it, however antelope can easily slip through the gates and fence.
The webcam also takes a snapshot of the Trapper’s Point historical marker just southwest of the wildlife overpass. That marker tells the story of the early 1800s fur trappers that came to the Upper Green River Valley and overlooks the location of several of the Green River Rendezvous gatherings that were held in the Green River Valley at the confluence of Horse Creek and the Green River just west of Trapper’s Point.
We’ve posted video clips of some of the animal crossings for both the current fall southern movement, which picked up in mid-September, and the latter part of the spring northern movement in April when Pinedale Online became the new administrators of the camera.
The wildlife webcam was original installed in 2012 by the Wildlife Conservation Society when the wildlife overpass was built. The webcam was part of a grant for their Path of the Pronghorn wildlife interpretive project, which included putting in a new highway interpretive pullout on US 191 about a mile east of the overpass, which was dedicated in April, 2016.
The Trapper’s Point Wildlife Overpass webcam can be found at www.trapperspoint.com. It may take up to a minute for the camera to first load on your computer. It uses satellite and cell phone technology to connect, thank you for your patience! When viewing, if your screen turns black after a bit, just move your mouse a little over the picture to reconnect to the cam. The software detects non-activity from your mouse and will disconnect you to save bandwidth from idle viewers. See the Video Archive page on the website for many more video clips of interesting views this year from the webcam.
Pinedale Online welcomes sponsors for the Trapper’s Point Wildlife Overpass webcam. Sponsorship logos are $100/month which helps pay for the monthly cost of operating the camera so the data collection and video monitoring can continue. This information is extremely useful for wildlife biologists researching the seasonal movement patterns of antelope and deer as they migrate through the Trapper’s Point bottleneck area. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org or call/text 307-360-7689 (anytime ok).