Search Field Guide
Advanced Search
Montana Animal Field Guide

Montana Field Guides

Woodland Caribou - Rangifer tarandus caribou

Global Rank: G5T4
State Rank: SX

Agency Status


External Links

General Description
We do not yet have descriptive information on this species.  Please try the buttons above to search for information from other sources.

Species Range
Montana Range

Click the legend blocks above to view individual ranges.

Western Hemisphere Range


Summary of Observations Submitted for Montana
Number of Observations: 68

(Click on the following maps and charts to see full sized version) Map Help and Descriptions
Relative Density



(Observations spanning multiple months or years are excluded from time charts)

Spring: follow green-up, lower elevations, open timber; females calve at higher elevation slopes and ridges. Summer: mature spruce-fir, north slopes; rut habitat similar, moister, denser. Early Winter: old growth cedar-hemlock. Late Winter: mature subalpine fir.

Food Habits
Winter: arboreal lichens. Spring: forbs and shrubs. Summer: Vaccinium membranaceum and Valeriana sitchensis. Fall and early Winter: evergreen forbs and shrubs and arboreal lichens.

26 to 28 caribou in northern ID, southern BC, 3 to 5 calves, 11 to 13 cows, 3 to 10 immature bulls, 3 to 4 mature bulls, cows, calves, immature bulls usually found together in 3.4 groups, mature bulls often more solitary - often move south.

Reproductive Characteristics
Selkirk herd raised 3 calves 1982 and 84, 5 calves in 1985. Calving second week of June at high elevations; high early calf mortality, maybe as high as 50 to 75% annually. Rut mid-September to October.

  • Additional ReferencesLegend:   View Online Publication
    Do you know of a citation we're missing?
    • Anonymous. 1953. Caribou on the Yaak. Montana Wildlife. August.
    • Evans, H. F. 1960. A preliminary investigation of caribou in northwestern United States. M.S. thesis, Montana State University, Missoula. 145 pp.
    • Evans, H. F. 1960. A preliminary investigation of caribou in northwestern United States. M.S. thesis. University of Montana, Missoula. 145 pp.
    • Manley, T. L. 1986. Status review of woodland caribou in Montana. Unpubl. Rep., Mont. Dept. of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, Helena. 84 pp.
    • Manley, T. L. 1986. Status survey of woodland caribou in Montana, final progress report. Montana Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks. March, 1986. 84 pp.
    • Miller, D. R. 1977. Feasibility of reintroducing caribou in Glacier National Park [1976 progress report]. P. 49 in K. L. McArthur, comp., 1976 Annual Research Summary, Glacier National Park. USDI National Park Service, Glacier National Park. 64 pp.
    • Miller, D. R. 1977. Feasibility of reintroducing caribou in Glacier National Park. Prog. Rep. 16 pp.
    • Miller, D. R. 1977. The feasibility of reintroducing caribou in Glacier National Park: a preliminary study. Unpubl. Rep. 16 pp.
    • Scott, M.D. and G. Servheen. 1985. Caribou ecology. Job completion report, PR Project #w-160-R-12. ID Dept Fish & Game. 136pp.
    • Servheen, G., and L. J. Lyon. 1989. Habitat use by woodland caribou in the Selkirk Mountains. J. Wildlife Management 53:230-237.
    • U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. 1984. Selkirk mountain caribou management/recovery plan. U.S. Fish Wildlife Service, Portland, Oregon. 121 pp.
  • Web Search Engines for Articles on "Woodland Caribou"
Login Logout
Citation for data on this website:
Woodland Caribou — Rangifer tarandus caribou.  Montana Field Guide.  Montana Natural Heritage Program and Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks.  Retrieved on September 28, 2016, from