Wolverine are a species of conservation priority provincially and nationally, partially due to their naturally low reproductive rates.
Female wolverine are vulnerable to disturbance, especially at reproductive den sites. Dens are excavations in the snow in high elevation cirque basins near tree-line and preferred areas are used repeatedly. Deep snow is favoured for denning habitat, making wolverine susceptible to climate change and a shrinking snowpack. Doris Hausleitner will describe female wolverine denning areas and how they have searched for them using a combination of new technologies and citizen science.
Based in Nelson, Doris Hausleitner is a wildlife biologist for Seepanee Ecological Consulting and an instructor of applied ecology at Selkirk College. Together with her research partner Andrea Kortello, Doris has been working on wolverine in the south Columbia Mountains since 2011. Following a five year genetic-based mark recapture study, the team has shifted focus to finding and conserving wolverine denning areas. In addition to working on wolverine, Doris specializes in research and conservation for rare and endangered species and feels most at home out in the field!