#YOLOSTONE NATIONAL PARK — Hundreds of wild animals were made warm and cozy Wednesday as the National Park Service began the arduous annual process of sheltering all manner of beasts and fowl for the harsh, cold winter months.
Now in its fifth season in #Yolostone National Park, The “Make Animals Warm Again” (MAWA) campaign has over the last several winters transitioned from being a mostly misunderstood experimental program into a leading example of wildlife management best practices for the National Park Service.
“We rewrote the fucking book,” #Yolostone chief administrator Jeff McRogers told TGR during a Skype interview. “Other parks have a lot of die-off during their winters, and that’s bad for everyone — especially the animals. We just didn’t want them to be cold anymore.”
According to the YNP administrator, the warming facility operates from mid-October all the way to June 1, and houses dozens of species, including bison, elk, pronghorn, beaver, wolf, bald eagle, golden eagle, black/grizzly bear, and many others.
BY HAVING THE ANIMALS CONFINED TO A BUILDING, FOLKS CAN GET THEIR SELFIES YEAR-ROUND WITHOUT HAVING TO RESPECT THE ANIMALS OR THEIR HABITAT IN ANY REAL WAY.
However, to keep things interesting, once a week the facility holds an event called “open season,” where park employees open all of the animal cages and the wildlife are allowed to intermingle with each other to simulate “conditions in their native habitat.”
MAWA’s “Open season” has over the last several years become #Yolostone’s biggest wintertime draw, with tourists from all over the world coming to see the simulated survival-of-the-fittest display.
“Seeing all that nature in one spot,” said Salt Lake City-based insurance salesman Bubba McGaffrey, “It just left me tickled.”
McRogers also asserted that the MAWA program offers an innovative approach to wildlife photography.
“Now tourists from all over the world can take selfies with #Yolostone’s megafauna year-round,” he said. “And by having the animals confined to a building, folks can do so without having to respect the animals or their habitat in any real way.”
Originally published on tetongravity.com.