Activities

The University of Montana’s Student Chapter of The Wildlife Society is an active club with over 50 members. At weekly meetings, students connect with wildlife professionals and learn about their research or work. Outside of meetings, members are given the opportunity to build job skills, network with professionals, and positively impact the community through service and outreach. This fall semester’s activities (Aug. 25 through Dec. 12, 2014) have included the following:  

Professional Development

  • 10 members assisted FWP conduct a two-day mountain goat survey
  • 14 members created non-invasive, traps for a FWP Northern Bog Lemmings survey
  • 27 members received hands-on small mammal trapping training
  • 10 members received telemetry and orienteering lessons
  • Three members assisted crew members conduct telemetry on snowshoe hares and collect vegetation data in the Blackfoot valley over the course of three weekends.
  • All six officers attended the national conference of The Wildlife Society. Officers attended lectures, participated in events and quiz bowl, and shared their activities and vision with other student officers at a student leadership breakfast.
  • Three undergraduate members were given the opportunity to present their summer field work and/or senior thesis projects to members at a Tuesday meeting.
  • Seven members assisted MPG and Raptor View Research Institute band captured bald and golden eagles and observe the capture process.

Education Outreach

  • “Be Bear Aware” presentations: A total of 21 members taught children and adults how to be safe in bear country by giving six Be Bear Aware presentations to classrooms, after-school programs, Girl Scouts and at community events. Together, members reached over 131 children and 50 adults.
  • “Wild Jobs” presentations: Nine members shared their past jobs in wildlife and encouraged students towards the biological sciences by giving Wild Jobs presentations to a 5th grade classroom and a high school after-school program. Together, members reached 44 students and three adults.
  • Four members guided an educational hike to Morell Falls for 15 visiting International students from Japan and one adult.
  • Seven members assisted the TWS Montana State Chapter table the two-day MEA-MFT Educator’s Conference. Members encouraged educators to promote wildlife education in their classrooms and take advantage of services offered by both the state and student chapter.
  • Five members taught 80 Girl Scouts and 15 adults about wildlife tracking and outdoor safety at the scout’s “Outdoor Survival Day.”
  • Four female officers joined the committee of UM faculty and professionals planning the 2nd annual Expanding Your Horizons conference aimed at encouraging middle school girls toward a career in STEM (science technology engineering and math).

Community Service

  • 42 TWS members joined forces with Backcountry Horsemen of Missoula and Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks to remove over 3.25 miles of barbed wire fence from Blackfoot Clearwater Wildlife Management Area to prevent wildlife from being injured or killed by getting entangled in the fencing. This is the chapters fourth year participating in the event.
  • Three members spent a total of 37 hours assisting the Be Bear Aware campaign with grant writing, organization, communications and presentation development.
  • 14 members assisted The Great Bear Foundation by gleaning over 200 lbs of fruit from a property recently visited by bears.
  • Six members removed eight garbage bags worth of houndstongue seeds from Missoula lands.
  • The student chapter adopted and purchased gifts for a family of five and one veteran for the holidays.

Upcoming Events

This spring will continue this trend of service, while also celebrating the return of three annual events:

  • The Wildlife Society Montana State Conference
  • Job Skills Weekend. Every spring, we organize a weekend event at Lubrecht Forest where wildlife professional teach job specific competencies to our membership. Last year’s event was attended by 23 members.
  • Wildlife Extravaganza. This will be our third year holding this community event.  

 

The Wildlife Society student chapter at the University of Montana


Student chapter of The Wildlife Society members with holiday gifts they donated to a local family and a veteran.

Student chapter of The Wildlife Society at the University of Montana


The Wildlife Society officer Jenah Mead making a presentation on grizzly bears to a local first grade class.