Biological Technician (wolf research), Yellowstone National Park, 1998-2018
It has been said that Rick McIntyre has had his eyes on wild wolves more hours than anyone else in the country, if not the world.
Rick McIntyre first became fascinated by wolves upon his first sighting of them in 1976 while working as a naturalist in Mount McKinley National Park (later named Denali National Park). He worked 15 summers in the park and in the winters, Rick was stationed in desert national parks such as Death Valley where he was once the supervising ranger on the location set of Return of the Jedi.
In 1994, Rick was hired as a naturalist at Yellowstone National Park and had the title Wolf Interpreter. All of his programs were on wolves and the proposed wolf reintroduction. The following January, the reintroduction launched with the first batch of 14 wolves arriving from Alberta, Canada and another 17 brought in from British Columbia the following year. Unexpectedly, those wolves were frequently visible from the park road and Rick helped thousands of visitors see them. He began to volunteer for the Wolf Project, the research team that monitored the wolves and studied their behavior, and switched over to working for Doug Smith, the project’s lead wolf biologist, in 1998. Rick continued his work as Biological Technician (wolf research) in Yellowstone National Park until his recent retirement in 2018.
For over 15 years, from June of 2000 through August of 2015, Rick went out before dawn every single day into the park. Those 6,175 days more than doubled Cal Ripken Jr’s record of playing in 2,632 consecutive baseball games. During one period, he saw wolves for 892 days in a row. In early 2019, he surpassed 100,000 wolf sightings in Yellowstone with nearly 12,000 pages of field notes of his observations.
Rick continues his daily study of wolves in Yellowstone while writing a series of three books about his experiences with wolves in Yellowstone.
The first of Rick's three books about the wolves of Yellowstone, is due to publish in October this year, with a foreward by none other than Robert Redford.