HE’S BACK! Wolverine spotted last winter seen again north of Truckee
A wolverine spotted by a graduate student last winter north of Truckee seems to have reappeared on nearby Sierra Pacific Industry lands.
The sighting on Sierra Pacific Industries’ forest lands follows a photo of a wolverine taken by a graduate student in 2008 about 15 miles from the Sierra Pacific Industries location.
Using DNA extracted from hair samples collected at photo stations, Dr. Michael Schwartz at the U.S. Forest Service’s Rocky Mountain Research Station concluded the wolverine was the same individual photographed in both locations, according to a press release from Sierra Pacific Industries.
The wolverine detections were made using movement-operated cameras as part of Sierra Pacific Industries’ ongoing comprehensive wildlife monitoring program, according to the release.
The sightings occurred on the company’s forest lands in December and January northwest of Truckee, according to the release.
These lands have been privately owned since the 1860s and have produced forest products since the 1930s. The most recent harvest in the area occurred in 2008, according to the release.
The endemic wolverine is listed by the State of California as a threatened species and holds special protection status under California law. Until these sightings, the presence of wolverines in the state had not been confirmed since the 1920s.
It is not a descendent of the last known Southern Sierra Nevada population. Based on analysis of its DNA, it most closely resembles genetic types found throughout the Northern Rocky Mountains, accoring to the release.