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Yellowstone Park: A Prime Reason to Live in Wyoming

May 31, 2008
Given these reasons, people would naturally be wondering why they should get themselves a real estate property in the state when others simply did not given the small population figure in the area. However, it's their loss.

This is because Wyoming is home to one of the most unique natural parks in the world. This park is Yellowstone National Park, the world's first national park.

Yellowstone National Park

The world's first National Park created in 1872 under President Ulysses Grant, Yellowstone offers unique features which include geysers or hot sprints that act like volcanoes. However, geysers do not spew forth lava like volcanoes do. Instead, they discharge water with great force from their spouts.

Geysers and Geothermal Features

One of these geysers is the Old Faithful Geyser. It gives an eruption of hot water after every 65 to 90 minutes, sometimes even after 125 minutes. The column of being shot skyward with every explosion could reach an average of 44 meters or 145 feet. A total of up to 8,400 U.S. gallons is ejected with every explosion.

The Steamboat Geyser, another active geyser in the Yellowstone area, holds the current record for the tallest geyser in the world. It can spew forth columns more than twice those given out by the Old Faithful, with recorded eruptions measuring more than 300 feet.

In contrast to the Old Geyser, the Steamboat Geyser does not follow a schedule for its major eruptions. A major eruption, which is at least 3 minutes to at most 40 minutes in duration, may follow a previous one after at least 4 days to at most 50 years (it was dormant from 1911 until 1961). However, it does shoot water up to 15 feet high every once in a while. The Steamboat's major eruptions may drain nearby cistern springs, which are refilled naturally after a few days.

Yellowstone is also the site of a major volcanic system, called the Yellowstone Caldera. The caldera, which is labeled a "supervolcano," is believed to have been caused by an eruption reportedly 1,000 times larger than the St. Helens' eruption.

Flora and Fauna

In Yellowstone, you can find about 1,700 species of fauna that are native to it, and an additional 170 species of exotic plants. A rare flower, the Yellowstone Sand Verbena, cannot be found anywhere else in the world. It is a mysterious flower, with about 8,000 specimens found blooming in the park's sandy shores.

Even bacteria are an attraction at the park, because trillion-sized colonies congregate into mats of weird shapes in the park's hot waters. You can find arthropods thriving in these water mats all throughout the four seasons. The ability of these microorganisms to survive despite the most frigid weathers was originally attributed to sulfur. However, researchers have recently found out that these microbes lived on consuming molecular hydrogen.

As for animals, Yellowstone has about 60 species of mammals, which include endangered species like the gray wolf, grizzly bears and the mountain lion. Yellowstone has a precarious predator-prey balance because of the endangered status of the wolf - caused by the extermination of the wolf in 1914 - and abundance of the coyote. This balance is caused by the coyote's inability to bring down the larger prey that the wolf could otherwise hunt with ease.

The United States government has been working to remedy this imbalance by reintroducing the wolf society in Yellowstone. Using 66 Canadian valley wolves, the program was initiated during the 1990s and has been largely successful. As of 2005, Yellowstone had a stable wolf population of 13 packs, comprised by a total of 118 wolves.

Other species rarely seen but residing in the park are the lynx, the mountain lion and the wolverine. Park authorities estimate about only 25 individual mountain lions in the park, while no accurate figures can be arrived at for the wolverine and the lynx. In fact, the lynx have shown no presence in the park since 1998 although hair samples have confirmed their residency in 2001.

Yellowstone is the home of the Yellowstone cutthroat trout, a threatened species of fish. Currently faced with the threat of the "whirling disease" parasite, ecologists suspect another deadly predator: the invasive lake trout. However, there has been no official documentation of the lake trout's introduction into Yellowstone's lakes.

Real Estate in Wyoming

Yellowstone is not the only attraction that Wyoming can offer you. There are several other national and recreation parks that you could enjoy. Imagine living right next door to these attractions.
About the Author
Attila Z Jancsina is a freelance copy writer. He occasionally writes for Wyoming Real Estate FSBO. Website offers Free FSBO advertisement.
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