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Wildlife Camera Trapping Research on Bainbridge Island Woodland Park Zoo (WPZ) and Seattle University scientists collaborated to launch the Seattle Urban Carnivore Project (SUCP) in 2019. This effort explores how carnivores—those in the scientific order Carnivora such as coyotes, black bears, raccoons, and bobcats—live and interact with people across the greater Seattle area. Researchers and volunteers with the Seattle Urban Carnivore Project deploy over 40 wildlife cameras across the greater Seattle area following the study design established by UWIN, the Urban Wildlife Information Network, coordinated by Lincoln Park Zoo’s Urban Wildlife Institute. The cameras are located within green spaces along either a north transect, a south transect or off-transect. The transects lie along an urban-to-rural gradient in the greater Seattle area and project volunteers manage about two-thirds of the camera stations. On Bainbridge Island, the cameras are located on Land Trust properties. We are currently recruiting returning and new volunteers to join the effort for the next season (the camera trapping season runs April 2022 – March 2023). Want to learn more? Read the full description here. Training (required; via Zoom) – Saturday, March 12th from 9:30 – 11:30 a.m. To sign-up as a volunteer and let us know your site and training preferences (make sure to note Bainbridge Island as your area preference!), please complete this form by 2/25:https://forms.gle/wYY2NXUCAbnP6RNK9READ MORE
Did you know river otters can hold their breath for up to 8 minutes while under water? They can even close their nostrils to keep water out during long dives. The playful river otter spends about two thirds of its time on land, but is an expert swimmer so it can use the water to travel and seek out food. These mammals have long, slim bodies with short, webbed feet and long, strong tails – allowing them to swim upwards of seven miles per hour and dive to depths of 60 feet! As you probably know, the waters around here can be quite cold! To combat the often frigid water temperatures, river otters have a thick protective coat. In order to keep their fur water resistant and properly insulating, otters have to groom themselves frequently. They wash themselves after every meal! Often spotted from the many shorelines of Bainbridge Island, the river otter is sometimes mistaken for its significantly larger cousin the sea otter. But what’s the difference between the two? The most obvious difference is size: a river otter is only about half to a third of the size of a sea otter. River otters swim with their bellies down, while sea otters float on their backs at the water’s surface. Sea otters also have short and stubby tails in comparison to those of river otters. Sea otters do not reside in Puget Sound, they are only found along the coast and occasionally in the Strait of Juan de Fuca. River otters are found all over the state, and across much of North America! River otters are pretty adaptable and can live in nearly any habitat near water as long as there is enough food around. These creatures have high metabolisms and have to eat frequently. Luckily, they will…READ MORE