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Yellowstone Ecological Research Center
Gallatin County, Montana
45.0198° -109.9390°


In the fall of 2003, Yellowstone Ecological Research Center(YERC) purchased the former campground site in Cooke City, Montana, roughly three miles outside the northeast boundary of Yellowstone National Park, as the location of the permanent YERC Field Station. The site is ideal for research access to the Lamar Valley, Yellowstone's Northern Range, Yellowstone Lake, Absaroka Wilderness, and the Beartooth Mountains. Additionally, travelers between Cooke City and YERC's home office in Bozeman, MT, pass through Mammoth Hot Springs, home to the Yellowstone Center for Resources, the main research arm of Yellowstone National Park.

The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem contains the full suite of large carnivore species present prior to European settlement, including fox, wolverine, coyotes, lynx, wolves, mountain lions, black bears, and grizzly bears. It also provides the headwaters for surface and ground water flow to a large section of the U.S., and hosts the last stronghold of two native cutthroat trout species Yellowstone and the closely related Snake River. The GYE lies at the interface of several major North American eco-regions, and as such includes a diverse mix of forests and grasslands, mountains and high plains, and wet and arid regions. These diverse ecotypes are representative of landscapes across the northern and central Rockies, plus the western edge of the Great Plains. Thus the GYE serves as an excellent proxy for many areas.

Customized identification guides
under development

Checklists with images, maps, and links

Albums of site participants

More information



  • Dr. Robert Crabtree, Chief Scientist, Yellowstone Ecological Research Center -- crabtree@yellowstoneresearch.org -- 406-556-1414
  • Nancy Lowe, Outreach Coordinator, Discover Life -- nancy@discoverlife.org -- 404-272-4526
Updated: 30 September, 2010
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