Research

From climate and wildlife to citizen science and vegetation, Glacier is a thriving laboratory home to over 1200 plant species, 240 bird species and 65 species of native mammals. Its habitat extends well beyond the park’s borders, making the Crown of the Continent one of the most biologically intact ecosystems in North America. The Conservancy funds research on priority issues that help us understand Glacier and inform conservation decisions that protect Glacier’s future.

Projects That Need Your Support

Survey Glacier’s Lynx Population

Funding Needed: $74,300

Lynx
Lynx / Kent Miller

Lynx are a secretive forest carnivore that has been little studied in Glacier National Park, even though the Park composes a significant portion of core lynx habitat in the northern Rockies. This landmark project will use 300 remote cameras to document large-scale distribution and abundance patterns of lynx within the Park’s confines.

Glacier’s Birds and Bats

Funding Needed: 

Harlequin Duck Migration Study $33,040 

Glacier’s Bat Program $24,928 

Eagle & Raptor Counts $25,752 

Black Swift Monitoring  $20,784

Golden Eagle
Golden Eagle / Kent Miller

2018 is the Year of the Bird, so it is fitting that the Park and the Glacier Conservancy have identified four research projects related to avian species for funding. Together, these four projects represent a strong commitment to state-of-the-art research on species of concern that, in many ways, define Glacier Park.

The Iinnii Initiative: Monitoring Impacts to Elk Herds

Funding Needed: $70,750

Bison and Elk
Bison and Elk / Donnie Sexton

As the Blackfeet Tribe and the Park work toward the reintroduction of bison (“iinnii” in Blackfeet) into Glacier, it is important to understand the impact of this historic initiative on resident elk herds. This three-year research project will track individual elk fitted with GPS radio collars to record habitat use and act as a predictor of changes in landscape use when the iinnii are finally reintroduced to the Park.

Mountain Goat Study

Funding Needed: $41,400

Mountain Goat
Mountain Goat / NPS

Leverage existing NPS funding to add significant actionable value to this groundbreaking three-year study.

Translocation of Alpine Stoneflies

Funding Needed: $22,844

Western glacier stonefly
Western glacier stonefly / Joe Giersch

This innovative project will study the feasibility of translocating Alpine Stoneflies to new habitats or to supplement existing populations. Stoneflies rely on glacial streams and snowmelt to survive. Glacier loss has reduced their populations to near-extinction.

Grizzly Bear Diet Study: Cutworm Moths

Funding Needed: $93,500

Grizzly grazing
Grizzly grazing / Arthur T. LaBar

Small but apparently delicious, Army Cutworm Moths can comprise 50% of a grizzly bear’s annual caloric intake. As consideration for delisting the Grizzly approaches, we need to understand the Grizzlies’ diet in Glacier National Park. This study will be the first ecosystem-wide project to find out why, where, and how.