Purgatory Fence Company 
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Case Study | USDA Forest Service
Northern Idaho Ground Squirral 

The Payette National Forest enthralls its beauty throughout the mid-central portion of the state of Idaho. It is bordered by three rivers and thousands of miles of forest. The northern portion by the Salmon River, the western by the Snake River, the east by the Middle Fork of the Salmon, and the south by the Boise National Forest.

Thousands of recreationists enjoy the land, water and the clean air every day. Residents must be tough and self-reliant to make it through the HOT sweltering heat of the dry summers and the Deep caverness snow storms that blanket the area. Many a day occurs that roads are closed and highways can't be traveled.
Purgatory Fence Company installed a fence to  protect the Northern Idaho Ground Squirrel. The objective was to install an area to keep people out of, while the squirrels continue to grow. They are the only species of their kind and only live in two spots in Idaho. Purgatory Fence Company took great care to protect their home and habitat and create a fence conducive of the area. Leaving a fence that would fit in with the surroundings keeping animal and human safe. 

The northern Idaho ground squirrel (Spermophilus brunneus brunneus) is smaller than most ground squirrels, at about 9 inches. It was listed as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act, April 5, 2000. The northern Idaho ground squirrel’s fur is dark reddish-gray (due to a mixture of black unbanded and yellowish-red banded guard hairs), with reddish-brown spots on its coat. It has a short, narrow tail, tan feet and ears, grey-brown throat and a creamy white eye ring. This rare squirrel needs large quantities of grass seed, stems and other green leafy vegetation to store fat reserves for its eight-month hibernation period (August/early September through late April/May). Adult males are first to emerge from burrows in the spring followed by females and their young. Populations of the northern Idaho ground squirrel have been found in Adams and Valley Counties of western Idaho, though the species historic range extends into neighboring Washington County. It occurs in dry meadows surrounded by ponderosa pine and Douglas-fir forests, including lands managed by the U.S. Forest Service’s Payette National Forest (1,500 to 7,500-foot elevations). Today there are an estimated 1,300 to 1,500 individual animals in about 54 populations, including New Meadows, Lost Valley Reservoir, and other nearby locations. It is thought that northern Idaho ground squirrel populations have decreased due to the loss of their native meadow habitat as a result of fire suppression. Important travel corridors have become fragmented, leaving the ground squirrels to survive in isolated islands of non-connected habitat. As of 2011, the recovery status remained unclear, though range-wide monitoring shows known populations as stable to slightly increasing over time. Biologists have recorded several new population sites, and the animal seems to be responding positively to habitat restoration at certain locations, especially on the Payette National Forest"  --US Fish and Wildlife Service


                                                                                        Case Study | USDA Forest Service
                                                                                           Idaho Bull Trout

Bull trout (Salvelinus confluentus) are members of the family Salmonidae and are native to Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Nevada, Montana and western Canada. Compared to other salmonids, bull trout have more specific habitat requirements that appear to influence their distribution and abundance. They need cold water to survive, so they are seldom found in waters where temperatures exceed 59 to 64 degrees (F). They also require stable stream channels, clean spawning and rearing gravel, complex and diverse cover, and unblocked migratory corridors. Bull trout may be distinguished from brook trout (Salvelinus fontinalis) by several characteristics: spots never appear on the dorsal (back) fin, and the spots that rest on the fish's olive green to bronze back are pale yellow, orange or salmon-colored. The bull trout's tail is not deeply forked as is the case with lake trout (Salvelinus namaycush). Bull trout exhibit two forms: resident and migratory. Resident bull trout spend their entire lives in the same stream/creek. Migratory bull trout move to larger bodies of water to overwinter and then migrate back to smaller waters to reproduce. An anadromous form of bull trout also exists in the Coastal-Puget Sound population, which spawns in rivers and streams but rears young in the ocean. Resident and juvenile bull trout prey on invertebrates and small fish. Adult migratory bull trout primarily eat fish. Resident bull trout range up to 10 inches long and migratory forms may range up to 35 inches and up to 32 pounds. Bull trout are currently listed coterminously as a threatened species." --- US Fish and Wildlife Service

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