All Research Articles
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.
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.
This report to experimentally tests the efficacy of education and enforcement in altering human behavior to better secure attractants (garbage) from bears. We conducted 3 experiments in Aspen CO, USA to evaluate: 1) on-site education in communal dwellings and construction sites, 2) Bear Aware educational campaign in residential neighborhoods, and 3) elevated law enforcement at two levels in the core business area of Aspen.
Conflict with humans poses a serious risk to the viability of carnivore populations worldwide. Identifying effective non-lethal management strategies demands an understanding of the interplay among multiple drivers of conflict at the scale of conflict situations. I quantified the spatial patterns of human-bear conflict in Whistler, Canada with utilization distributions of conflict incidents. I examined the strength of evidence for the effects of landscape and habitat variables associated with conflict using Resource Utilization Functions, Generalized Least Squares, and model selection. Seasonality emerged as a determinant of spatial variability of conflict with bears using more concentrated attractants in the fall than in the summer or spring. No covariates could be identified as drivers of conflict at a local scale despite the pressing need to design management interventions at this scale. This lack of predictability underscores the necessity for responsive adaptive management policies to reduce human-carnivore conflict in increasingly human-dominated landscapes.
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.
During 1995–2006 research projects in Florida and Kentucky, USA, the authors captured 191 (72 F:119 M) American black bears (Ursus americanus) 251 times using modified Aldrich spring-activated snares. The modifications the authors describe is an improvement to existing snaring methods and are applicable for any snare trigger and for any species trapped using an anchored foot snare.
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.
Analyzing the influence of habitat, reproductive class and season on the location of black bear conflict sites in Whistler, B.C.
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Sep 24, 2009 — Video: Bear Man
Look through a window into the lives of black bears with naturalist Ben Kilham, author of Among the Bears. Bear Man is the story of Ben Kilham's controversial methods of black bear behavioral research and rehabilitation.
Sep 24, 2009 — Video: Papa Bear
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Jul 29, 2009 — Web Page: Research
In 2005, the B.C. Conservation Officer Service, along with the B.C. Conservation Foundation, funded a project to investigate the efficacy of non-lethal bear management in Whistler, for application to other jurisdictions. Specifically, we investigated how bears responded to AC, a process of hitting bears with rubber bullets to make them more wary of humans and human developments.
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Since its inception as the Jennifer Jones Whistler Bear Foundation in 1995, the Get Bear Smart Society has been working hard to make Whistler, the South Coast, and the rest of British Columbia a safer place for both bears and people.
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The Get Bear Smart Society (GBS) is a registered Canadian charity that works hard to ensure people and bears safely and respectfully coexist wherever their homes and home ranges overlap.