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The Sawtooth Society, since its establishment in 1997, has been at the forefront of efforts to preserve, protect, and enhance the Sawtooth National Recreation Area (SNRA). The organization’s mission is not just about safeguarding the land but also about ensuring the well-being of the diverse wildlife that calls this area home. Through advocacy, stewardship, and volunteer programs, the Society works tirelessly to maintain the SNRA as a haven for both people and wildlife.

The Society’s activities include enhancing recreational opportunities, advocating for the preservation of the SNRA’s natural and historical values, and increasing public awareness and appreciation for this natural haven. Their advocacy efforts are focused on protecting the area from threats to the values preserved and protected in the founding legislation – Public Law 92 – 400.  Fish and wildlife values lead this list and require managing natural resources responsibly to avoid impairing the area’s purpose​.

Springtime in the SNRA brings a surge of activity as the local fauna emerge from winter seclusion. Bears, mountain lions, wolves, and a variety of ungulates become more active, necessitating responsible wildlife encounters. The Sawtooth Society provides guidance on safely coexisting with these creatures, highlighting the importance of being mindful and respectful of wildlife to ensure both their safety and that of visitors​.

The future of the SNRA faces challenges such as development pressure, increasing recreational use, and wildfire threats. The Society recognizes the need for collaborative approaches to manage these issues effectively, including programs like trailhead stewards to educate visitors, and working with the Sawtooth Wildland Fire Collaborative, to help reduce wildland fires. 

In summary, protecting the wildlife of SNRA is a complex endeavor that involves not just conserving their habitats but also managing human interactions and activities within these areas. The Sawtooth Society’s dedication to these efforts is crucial for the continued existence of the SNRA’s diverse ecosystems and the species that depend on them.