Today we released the first 3 marmots of the season. Stuart, Flores, and Sidney joined the colony at Mount Washington Alpine Resort with seeming enthusiasm.
Born in captivity at the The Calgary Zoo, this the first time these marmots have experienced the wild, and the speed with which they made that transition was impressive. Within moments the marmots were exploring the world around their new home, and sampling the local vegetation.
There are still more marmots from the The Toronto Zoo to be released, but it is great to see the first ones out adapting so quickly after their release!
Field Crew Norberto and Jordan help veterinarian Malcolm get the marmots into their new home. Its a new and frightening experience for the marmots, and they don’t always want to go. Malcolm and Norberto position the trap and encourage the marmot to go into the nest box by tickling its feet.
The marmots today were poking their heads out immediately. These are two of Flores, Sidney, and Stuart.
Within a couple minutes, the first marmot is out! This is quick, often the marmots will spend 5 to 15 minutes in the familiar nest box before emerging.
Looks like this marmot has already picked out her/his favorite lookout rock.
Time to explore, and coax the others out of the nestbox! As tempting as it is to stay, we need to let them be for bit. They are in the middle of the Mount Washington colony, and should be safe to explore their new environment.