Document Type

Grand Teton National Park Report

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The elk and bison winter ranges in the Jackson Valley lie on a land complex consisting of Grand Teton NP (GTNP), National Elk Refuge (NER), town of Jackson, private ranches, and private housing developments. To reduce conflicts on these private lands, elk and bison are artificially fed alfalfa pellets at several feedgrounds located on the National Elk Refuge, the Gros Ventre Valley (Bridger-Teton NF), and south of the town. The concentrations of elk may be altering vegetation communities, especially riparian willow, aspen, buffaloberry, and other woody shrubs near the feedgrounds. Managers are concerned about these possible alterations. Human developments, human alterations, artificial feeding and high incidence of brucellosis in elk and bison complicate management of free-ranging ungulates in Grand Teton NP and the Jackson Valley. Managers need additional information on predicted land use changes, feeding scenarios, and ungulate-disease relations in the Jackson Valley to guide their management decisions.