Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Units Program: Wyoming
Education, Research and Technical Assistance for Managing Our Natural Resources

Wyoming Project

Evaluating the role of spring-fed streams to Yellowstone Cutthroat Trout

July 2021 - June 2024


Participating Agencies

  • University of Wyoming - Biodiversity Institute
  • Wyoming Wildlife and Natural Resource Trust
  • Grand Teton Association
  • University of Wyoming - National Park Service
  • Jackson Hole One Fly

Yellowstone cutthroat trout (Oncorhychus clarkii bouvieri; YSC) populations have been extirpated or are in decline throughout most of their range due to habitat degradation, hybridization with non-native species, and climate change. How stream habitat diversity, specifically, the availability of stable spring-fed streams, underlies the integrity of YSC in the Snake River watershed is not well appreciated. By developing a more complete understanding of the mechanisms underlying YSC success in the upper Snake River watershed, we can both direct local habitat management efforts and inform best approaches to population recovery in areas where YSC are in decline. The project is a collaborative effort between multiple agencies, including the Wyoming Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit, the University of Wyoming, Grand Teton National Park, and the Wyoming Game and Fish Department. This research will provide the necessary understanding of the role of groundwater to maintaining suitable stream temperatures despite climatic warming.