April 2021 - 40

I

n a place as arid as Wyoming, it's
often said water is more valuable
than gold. The rivers that carve
their way through flat, sage plateaus, wind among towering pines
and skim the bases of enormous
granite mountains act as arteries
bringing life to the landscape. While
only roughly 3 percent of the Mountain West is riparian habitat, it is
estimated more than 90 percent of
wildlife interact with these zones.
Some, like a cow moose and her calf,
may pause for a drink on the rocky
bank or munch on nearby willows,
which draw nutrients from the moist
ground. Others, like the cutthroat
trout, spend the entirety of their life
amid the varying currents.

A breeding pair of harlequin ducks
take a break from fishing in the
Yellowstone River at LeHardy Rapids
in Yellowstone National Park.

A Snake River cutthroat trout
swims in a spring-fed tributary of
the Snake River near Jackson.

40 | April 2021	



April 2021

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https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/october-2021
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https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/January2021
https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/December2020
https://www.nxtbook.com/wyominggame/WyomingWildlife/September2020
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