Marmot leaves city for Yosemite National Park

By Alex MacLean / The Union Democrat

A yellow-bellied marmot was taken home to Yosemite National Park on Sunday, after it was caught last week about 200 miles west in San Francisco.

The wayward critter was captured Tuesday in San Francisco's Potrero Hill neighborhood, according to Wildlife Emergency Services, a nonprofit animal rescue organization. Going off tips received after the story made headlines, the group believes the marmot hailed from the May Lake area of Yosemite National Park.

Wildlife Emergency Services volunteer Duane Titus trapped the marmot in the backyard of a home in the neighborhood, where the animal was first spotted about two weeks earlier. Titus set up a cage in the yard and made a trail of crumbs from a dried fruit cookie, which the portly rodent was unable to resist.

The animal followed the trail of crumbs into the trap and was transported to the Wildlife Center of Silicon Valley to check for diseases. After receiving a clean bill of health, the marmot was set to return home.

A bar in San Francisco was planning to sell "Marmotinis" to raise funds that would help Wildlife Emergency Services pay the fuel costs for the marmot's long return trip to Yosemite.

Wildlife Emergency Services President Rebecca Dmytryk said it's not uncommon for marmots to appear in the Bay Area.

For the full story, see the July 7, 2014, edition of The Union Democrat.

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