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TobiasT

North Cascades grizzly study

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There was a big study of the grizzlies (or lack of grizzlies) in the national park this summer, I've looked around for the results of the study but haven't found anything. Anybody know anything about it? They set 90 baited barbed wire snares to snag hair which they DNA tested. The bears are always kind of in the back of my mind when I'm up there, just find them fascinating. Thanks.

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There's very credible evidence of the occasional giz in the N.C. but several hair snare projects, a rather extensive one from a M.S. thesis out of U.W. - have come up empty. The two that I know of personally are the male that came back to a elk carcass up a drainage along the Pend Oreille river, just south of the border when I was working up there a few years ago and spotted by the local USFS biologist; and the spotted owl crew who took pictures of good prints in the snow, back around 2002(?). Basically the habitat in the N.C. is not so good for mr. griz, the Selkirk part of the recovery plan suggests maybe 3 pair could be supported. Lots of sightings of blondies - light colored black bears that folks often mistake for the big guy.

 

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I spent the last 3 summers in the Priest Lake area (very near the area to which Jim is referring) and the grizzly activity seems to have increased each year. This past summer, 2 of my co-workers got photos of 3 separate animals, including a juvenile at the roundabout on Schweitzer Road of all places.

 

I am also looking forward to hearing the DNA results from the North Cascades...

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Lots of sightings of blondies - light colored black bears that folks often mistake for the big guy.

 

 

I took a (real shitty) picture of a blond blackie in MRNP about four years ago. We accidentally walked right up on him during a cross-country trip through Elysian Fields. He was humping a log before he noticed me and walked off.

 

869CIMG1604.JPG

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There was a big study of the grizzlies (or lack of grizzlies) in the national park this summer, I've looked around for the results of the study but haven't found anything. Anybody know anything about it? They set 90 baited barbed wire snares to snag hair which they DNA tested. The bears are always kind of in the back of my mind when I'm up there, just find them fascinating. Thanks.

 

The southernmost confirmed Griz sighting/footprints was on the north shore of Chelan about 2/3 of the way towards Stehekin. They're definitely in the N Cascades, at least as visitors, but I wouldn't worry too terribly much about ever seeing one, considering the odds.

 

Some brownies even have big white patches on their chest. Black bears come in a lot of colors.

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I saw one grizzly with a cub in a meadow off of a trail south of Joe Mills Mountain in the Pesayten about 1996 over Memorial Day weekend.

 

Could not get a photograph. I was too scared. I ran instead--I panicked. My accidental presence scared her and her cub too.

 

I looked back and she stood up. She was tall. That was when my heart fell into my ass.

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A fair number of moose wander through there, too, particularly along the Stehekin River. We did the Cathedral/Tungsten Mine loop last summer and saw lots of moose poo.

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Seen a number of Bulwinkles up near the border during field work, but have yet to see the elusive woodland caribou. Did see old tracks once.

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Basically the habitat in the N.C. is not so good for mr. griz, the Selkirk part of the recovery plan suggests maybe 3 pair could be supported.

 

Why? what has changed in the habitat since the mid-19th century?

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Selkirk's right. There were probably few grizzlies ever in the N.C. Too hard to get from tiny valley to tiny valley, tough food supply. The great plains was perfect for them, though, apparently.

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Selkirk's right. There were probably few grizzlies ever in the N.C. Too hard to get from tiny valley to tiny valley, tough food supply. The great plains was perfect for them, though, apparently.

 

Basically yes. NC were never full of griz.

 

For the curious caribou seekers: http://wdfw.wa.gov/publications/pub.php?id=00448

 

 

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So, the Puget Lowland and North central WA could have been good grizzly habitat?

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Basically the habitat in the N.C. is not so good for mr. griz, the Selkirk part of the recovery plan suggests maybe 3 pair could be supported.

 

Why? what has changed in the habitat since the mid-19th century?

 

Four major highways that slice its range to pieces--not to mention government-sponsored eradication efforts aimed at both it and wolves. From tenuous to gone in less than 100 years.

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I was at a talk by John Reedle(NCNP Head Geologist) and he suggested that the East side of Ross Lake had been primo habitat, but much of it was lost with the creation of the lake. I don't remember much more than that, and have no source, but thought that was a possible reason.

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So, the Puget Lowland and North central WA could have been good grizzly habitat?

 

That would have been a lot better. Puget lowland is basically Alaskan panhandle environment, lots of fish - perfect. Eastern WA has lots of rodents the occasional downer elk - perfect.

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