Mission: Providing reliable knowledge through science to preserve, protect and enhance Colorado’s wildlife resource.
To support the management of Colorado’s wildlife resources, the Mammals Research section acquires and produces research information for the Colorado Parks and Wildlife (CPW). Scientific-based original research is conducted that advances the profession’s and agency’s collective knowledge about wildlife species, their habitats, and their future management. Contemporary research projects and issues span the size of mammals in Colorado, ranging from the tiny Preble’s meadow jumping mouse to cougars to moose.
The Mammals Research section conducts projects utilizing appropriate scientific experimental designs, techniques and analyses with the goal of providing objective, reliable, pertinent and cutting-edge knowledge. The intention is to anticipate knowledge needed to manage wildlife species in a constantly changing and confining human-dominated environment and use that vision to help guide the research program. Part of the research program’s responsibility is to push the envelope of developing and applying new research information to the management of mammals and their related plant and animal species.
The section has a long-standing working relationship with Colorado State University through the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Conservation Biology, College of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, many other departments on the CSU campus and the USDI Colorado Cooperative Wildlife Research Unit. Over the decades, much of the research conducted by the Mammals section was funded by federal aid in wildlife restoration Pittman-Robertson Funds along with CPW game cash funds and, more recently, funding also includes donations from Great Outdoors Colorado, the private business sector and private individuals though agency-sponsored programs. The research program presents research results through various verbal presentations, annual reports and scientifically peer-reviewed written publications.
The Mammals Research Section strives to maintain a proud tradition of conducting quality research - as was recognized by The Wildlife Society, which presented the Group Achievement Award in 1986 to the Wildlife Research section of the Colorado Parks and Wildlife “for their exceptional cumulative record of scholarly contributions to the science of wildlife management.” An article summarizing the history and purpose of research sections in the CPW, “Solving Tomorrow’s Wildlife Problems,” can be found in the November/December 2006 issue of Colorado Outdoors.
For decades, the Colorado Parks and Wildlife has supported and maintained multiple research sections consisting of Mammals, Avian
, and Wildlife Health
. That support has helped create an atmosphere that has attracted and retained excellent wildlife ecologists. The current Mammals staff has outstanding talents in field ecology, species expertise, experimental design, biometrics, innovation and passion for sustaining wildlife species and their critical habitats. Although the research section is based out of Fort Collins, researchers are also based in Montrose and Grand Junction, Colorado to facilitate oversight of several projects in western Colorado. All of the staff love the great outdoors and enjoy wildlife viewing, hunting, fishing, photography, hiking, camping and traveling to great wildlife and scenic vistas.
317 W. Prospect Road
Fort Collins, CO 80526
Section Support Staff
Kay Horton Knudsen
317 W. Prospect Road
Fort Collins, CO 80526
Former Research Leaders
In the 1960s and 1970s, the Mammals section was a big game research section with a primary focus towards deer, elk, antelope and bighorn sheep and these species respective range-habitat issues. Reflecting broadening agency responsibilities, the spectrum of the section in the early 1980s widened to include large carnivores and threatened species. During this time, the section’s size of staff and diversity of projects necessitated two research leaders to oversee Cervid and Non-Cervid research programs within the Mammals section. In the 1990s, the section returned to having one research leader.
- Dave Freddy 2005-2008
- Gary Miller 2001-2004
- Bruce Gill 1974-2001
- Len Carpenter 1981-1989
- Hal Swope 1969-1974
- Jack Grieb 1967-1968
- Dick Denny 1965-1966
List likely not all inclusive
Bill Adrian, Allan Anderson, Bert Baker, Dan Baker, Dick Bartmann, George Bear, Tom Beck, Dave Bowden (CSU Biometrician, Contract), Ray Boyd, Len Carpenter, Dave Freddy, Bruce Gill, Dale Hibbs, Tom Hobbs, Bob Keiss, Ron Kufeld, Bill McKean, Dean Medin, Mike Miller, Tom Pojar, Dale Reed, Larry Roper, Bill Rutherford, Harold Shepherd, Don Smith, Gary White (CSU Biometrician/Ecologist, Contract), Margaret Wild, Lisa Wolfe, and Tom Woodard.