Visitor Counter

hitwebcounter web counter
Visitors Since Blog Created in March 2010

Click Below to:

Add Blog to Favorites

Grizzly bears, black bears, wolves, coyotes, cougars/ mountain lions,bobcats, wolverines, lynx, foxes, fishers and martens are the suite of carnivores that originally inhabited North America after the Pleistocene extinctions. This site invites research, commentary, point/counterpoint on that suite of native animals (predator and prey) that inhabited The Americas circa 1500-at the initial point of European exploration and subsequent colonization. Landscape ecology, journal accounts of explorers and frontiersmen, genetic evaluations of museum animals, peer reviewed 20th and 21st century research on various aspects of our "Wild America" as well as subjective commentary from expert and layman alike. All of the above being revealed and discussed with the underlying goal of one day seeing our Continent rewilded.....Where big enough swaths of open space exist with connective corridors to other large forest, meadow, mountain, valley, prairie, desert and chaparral wildlands.....Thereby enabling all of our historic fauna, including man, to live in a sustainable and healthy environment. - Blogger Rick

Subscribe via email to get updates

Enter your email address:

Receive New Posting Alerts

(A Maximum of One Alert Per Day)

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Maryland Black Bear population seems to be on the rise with a 2011 study about to be published that will likely reveal a larger population than the 600 animals last counted in 2005..............The Western Mountains of the State is the core region for the Bruins but there is evidence that they are dispersing into eastern counties as well.........When a plentiful Fall acorn crop exists, the number 1 mortality agent for the Bears(auto collisions) are greatly reduced as the bears do not need to wander afar seeking food............With a shortage of the "corns" as there was last Fall, 82 deaths were recorded by autos whereas a typical year sees 50 fatalities..........As with Coyotes, while some negative interactions with people do occur, coexistance is seemingly the tone heard coming from many residents including hunters: "I see a lot of them when I'm hunting" -------"I think it's kind of neat"--Greg Ragan, avid otdoorsman and Maryland Park Ranger

Maryland Black bears
Maryland Dept. of Natural Resources

The western part of the state -- defined as Frederick, Washington, Allegany and Garrett counties -- is "occupied" by black bears, meaning that sows have given birth to cubs. But, Spiker said, there is "evidence" that black bears are in other counties, including Montgomery.--

Current population numbers are not available, Spiker said, but he is expecting the findings from a 2011 study to be released in about a month. A 2005 study reported the population at 600 adult and sub-adult (yearlings). The state holds an annual bear hunt in Garrett and Allegany counties, where the highest bear population is found.

"For the most part, they don't cause a lot of problems," Spiker said, noting that DNR received 300 nuisance complaints in 2011, most in Garrett and Allegany counties, and most were bird-feeder or garbage-can incidents.--

As with coyotes, a lone bear may occasionally kill livestock. "A couple of nights ago, a black bear killed some goats in Garrett County," Spiker said. The bear was put down.--"That's rare," he said.
May is the month that the juveniles or yearlings will disperse and drivers need to be alert for bears crossing highways.

Most bear road fatalities occur in the fall and, he said, there is a correlation between the acorn crop and fatalities. Bears love acorns, and when the crop is good, there are fewer road kills, according to Spiker.
Last year was a record year for bear road fatalities with 82 statewide -- six in Frederick County and eight in Washington County, he said.-- "I attribute that to two things: an acorn shortage and a really warm winter where a lot of the bears stayed out instead of going into hibernation," Spiker said. The average number of bear road fatalities is 50 per year.

Tony Poffenberger, who lives on Timbery Court near Jefferson, reports that he saw a black bear passing through his yard early one morning late last month.Greg Ragan has a trail camera in the backyard of his Eastview home near Frederick. The camera snaps a photo whenever an animal moves in front of it. So far, he's captured photos of a coyote and a black bear.--

Ragan, an avid outdoorsman and former park ranger, is not concerned about the proximity of the wild animals to his home. "I see a lot of them when I'm hunting," he said, noting he frequently hunts in the Western states, too.--"I think it's kind of neat," he said.

No comments: