All Community Articles
In 2012 biologists Maggie Paquet and Wayne McCrory completed a detailed landmark bear study for the Valhalla Society, partly under the provincial Bear Smart program, on bear-human conflicts and ways to reduce problems with bears in the Upper Slocan Valley. Thanks to numerous proactive measures by BC Parks and other agencies, there are now few conflicts in the backcountry. Most conflicts occur with black bears in the front country. Here, even though agencies and communities have made significant investment in bear-proofing and other measures to control attractants, the study recommends completion of bear-proofing of garbage and other attractants, improved bylaws, relocation of bears when they first show up in communities rather than shooting them when they become problematic and other measures.
What it really means to be a Bear Smart Community
A bit about polar bears and how to be safe in polar bear country.
Apr 19, 2011 — Web Page: Got Garbage?
No vehicle to get to the compactor site? Find out how to get rid of your garbage.
Whether you're an educator, resident, scientist or wildlife officer, as someone who cares about bears, it's your job to spread the bear smart word - choosing your words carefully. Words are powerful. They can find their way deep into the very fabric of our being and belief systems, shaping our thoughts and actions. Words influence our perceptions and affect attitudes. They can inspire and encourage the right behaviour; or hinder and create apathy and inaction.
In this paper the authors tested the ability to use stable isotope analysis (by plucking hair from captured bears) to quantify garbage in bear diet. They contrasted hairs taken from spring harvested bears and bear captures in Missoula, Montana in 2009. Results: 1. Stable isotopes seem promising for actually identifying garbage in diet, but there are still some issues to be worked out; 2. Garbage was not a significant food source for bears around Missoula in 2008.
To assess the likelihood that different sex and age classes of bears that use landfills would display problem behaviour following landfill closure, we conducted the McLeod Lake Landfill Grizzly Bear Behaviour Project over a 3-year period: 2000 (pre-landfill closure), 2001 and 2002 (post-landfill closure). Our study was designed to identify attributes or behaviours that may be used to predict which bears are more likely to seek out alternate human-food sources after a landfill closes, thus becoming problem bears and posing a threat to humans. If we are able to predict whether certain classes of bears are more likely to become problems than others, this knowledge could be applied during subsequent landfill closures where those bears with an
increased likelihood of posing a threat to human safety would be destroyed, while the remaining
bears would be allowed to live.
The author tested the efficacy of aversive conditioning (AC) and conditioned taste aversion (CTA) on American black bears (Ursus americanus) in Whistler, British Columbia. The study used AC (rubber bullets fired from a shotgun and marbles fired from a sling shot) in an attempt to increase bear wariness toward humans and decrease the time bears spend in human developments. Thiabendazole, an emetic with low toxicity, was used to teach bears to associate illness with specific attractants that cause human-bear conflict.
One of the most rewarding discoveries for a bear in an urban area is an unsecured grease vessel. Many restaurants and eateries use these vessels to store used cooking oil which is then collected by companies that recycle the oil into products like biodiesel. Although this is an important environmental service, when mishandled, it can come at the cost of a bear’s life. A full standard barrel contains 210 liters of oil. That translates into a whopping 1.6 MILLION calories for the smaller vessels (in bear terms, that is a MAJOR SCORE… equal to many weeks of foraging for berries). The caloric value, combined with the smell of tasty fryer fixings, makes grease vessels irresistible. Attractants such as this draw bears into urban areas. Once there, it is often easy for bears to opportunistically find unsecured food, garbage, or other attractants. It only takes one food reward for a bear to start becoming food conditioned. Food conditioned bears are at a much higher risk for being killed due to human-bear conflict.
As part of journalism’s commitment to truth and justice by providing a diversity of relevant points of view, journalists have an obligation to provide the perspective of nonhuman animals in everyday stories that influence the animals’ and our lives. This essay provides justification and guidance on why and how this can be accomplished, recommending that, when writing about nonhuman animals or issues, journalists should: (1) observe, listen to, and communicate with animals and convey this information to audiences via detailed descriptions and audiovisual media, (2) interpret nonhuman animal behavior and communication to provide context and meaning, and (3) incorporate the animals’ stories and perspectives, and consider what is in their best interest. To fairly balance animal-industry sources and the anthropocentric biases that are traditionally inherent in news requires that journalists select less objectifying language and more appropriate human sources without a vested interest in how animals are used.
As policy makers and wildlife professionals, there is a significant amount of thought and effort that can be incorporated into the early stages of planning roadways to reduce collisions with wildlife. For already existing highways, mitigation to reduce wildlife collision is important not just for wildlife, but also for public safety.
Animal collisions pose a risk to wildlife, people and their property. Help us to reduce the staggering number of incidents by following these guidelines.........
Are you feeling devastated by the high number of bears getting killed, yet working with tireless determination to create a bear smart movement? Does it sometimes feel like an overwhelming task? A thankless job? Like you take one step forward and two backwards? Do you feel as though you may be developing compassion fatigue? Sometimes when compassion is a one-way street; you give all of your energy and compassion to helping a cause, and aren't able to get enough back to reassure yourself that the world is a hopeful place.
Download brochures and flyers for home, play or your business. These are specifically designed for Whistler residents, businesses and visitors.
The Wisconsin bear-hunting season did not show clear evidence of reducing nuisance complaints during 1995-2004, probably because hunting was not effectively designed for that goal. We call for additional research on hunter and bear behavior, including experimental tests of hunting individuals with different levels of involvement in property damage. At the statewide scale, complaints about agricultural damage, other property damage, or human safety concerns did not correlate with each other or with number of bears taken by hunters in the preceding 1-2 years.
Recently, the Grizzly Bear Outreach Project (GBOP) team skyped Get Bear Smart to learn more about creating bear smart communities in Washington. I'm sure many of you have the same questions, so I thought I'd provide a summary of the conversation.
Face it, no one likes to talk about death - especially not his or her own. And to talk about planned giving, you have to acknowledge the fact that a "planned" gift is one that will be given to a charity after the donor has shuffled off his or her mortal coil. It takes a very specific approach - and personality type - to do it well. This whitepaper introduces you to: (1) Seven essential steps to launching a successful planned-giving program; (2) 10 things you must know about planned giving; (3) The seven deadly sins of planned-giving strategies; (4) How to make planned-giving donors feel special; (5) The privacy pitfalls inherent in planned giving and how to avoid them.
You've heard the whispers in the wind - more and more people, especially younger ones - are eschewing personal e-mail and relying on social-networking sites like MySpace and Facebook to communicate with their friends. As a result, many personal e-mail accounts are not much more than repositories for marketing messages whose subject lines get a quick glance before the owners hit the "Delete" button. Whether things have gone that far or not (and we don't believe they have, yet), the fact remains that anyone with an e-mail account is the target of hundreds of marketing messages a day and the potential target of thousands - many of them fundraising appeals from you and your (for lack of a better word) competitors. Your job as a legit professional looking to raise funds via e-mail is to make your e-mail messages stand out amid the ads for male-enhancement pills and diet breakthroughs and the latest appeal from the beleaguered Nigerian prince who wants to give someone a million dollars to help him keep his family fortune from falling into the hands of his oppressors.
This research project aimed to identify why communities struggle to meet the "Bear Smart" standards and to provide recommendations on how the managing agency can more effectively implement the program.
Problematic human-black bear interactions have increased in North America. Research is needed to clarify influences on human concern about and reaction to bear behavior, such that wildlife managers can better understand and maintain stakeholder acceptance capacity for bears. This article uses mail survey data (n = 1,038, response rate = 42%) and structural equation modeling (SEM) to test a conceptual model of factors affecting concern about bears and predisposition to contact authorities for assistance. Findings support hypotheses that both variables are influenced by wildlife value orientation, personal experience with bears, and television viewing. Use of print media is not a predictor of concern or behavioral predisposition, leading to rejection of those hypotheses. Strong wildlife benefits beliefs and neutral personal experience with bear presence attenuate concern, while exposure to television has the opposite effect. Findings suggest that improving measures of personal experience and basic beliefs will strengthen models of bear-related concern.