Nature at its best, this is what this story is all about.
In 1995, fourteen wolves were released in Yellowstone National Park.
No one expected the miracle that the wolves would bring.
It started with the wolves hunting deer. This led to a rapidly decreasing deer population. The wolves presence also made the deer avoid parts in the park where they were an easy prey. Thanks to the deer’s absence, those parts started to regenerate.
Forests of aspen and willow trees started to flourish. That’s when things really started to happen. With the trees and bushes came more berries and bugs.
As soon as that happened, various bird species started moving in.
With the increasing tree population, also another species was attracted. The beaver, previously extinct in the region, moved back. And the dams they built provided habitats for otters, muskrats and reptiles.
The wolves also killed coyotes. As a result of that, the numbers of rabbits and mice grew. This meant more hawks, redfoxes, badgers and weasels in the park.
Even the population of bald eagles and ravens rose.
But here’s where it gets really interesting. The wolves changed the behavior of the rivers. With more balance between predator and prey, came the possibility for other species to thrive. There was less erosion because of increased vegetation. And the river banks were stabilized. The channels narrowed. More pools formed. And the rivers stayed more fixed in their course.
So the wolves did not only transform the ecosystem, they also changed the physical geography. Incredible?
Watch this very interesting transformation of Yellowstone National Park in this video from Appreciate.