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Grand Teton National Park Report

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Melanism (black fur coloration) in the yellow-bellied marmot, Marmota flaviventris, is encountered uniquely in the Teton Range in northwest Wyoming. This study is designed to investigate whether the occurrence of melanism is associated with reduced predation due to high human activity. Because overuse by humans can particularly stress the environment, the implications of this project are especially significant for Grand Teton National Park where efforts are directed to minimizing human impact. In addition, an estimation technique to calculate the likelihood that the melanistic allele is dominant is developed.