Part two of the Summit Voice Bear Blog, part of a two-month partnership effort with the Colorado Division of Wildlife to promote the Bear Aware program, aimed to reduce conflicts between bears and humans. Read Part One here.
Can polar bears survive climate change?
SUMMIT COUNTY — Polar bears are often identified as being one of the animals most at-risk from global warming, but some recent research suggests they may be able to adapt relatively quickly to a changing climate — at least as compared to some other species. Looking back at polar bear evolution, scientists have learned that they split off from brown bears as a distinct species only about 150,000 years ago — a very short interval on the evolutionary scale. That adaptation may have been an adaption to climate change just before the last inter-glacial period, when being able to hunt in ice-covered seas would have been a big advantage. But whether they can adapt to the pace of change currently sweeping the Arctic is an open-ended question. Read the story at EarthSky.org.
The ‘Bear Walker’
The Outside magazine blog recently posted a Q&A with Dr. Lynn Rogers, who has spent 43 years studying black bears and is determined to change the nature of the relationship between bears and humans. Rogers will be featured in an April 4 episode of Wild Kingdom called Bearwalker of the Northwoods. Rogers says bears have been demonized and believes that, the more people understand bears, the more they’ll be willing to learn how to co-exist with them. Read the Outside blog here.
Grizzly hunts in B.C. exceeding sustainable limits
As the grizzly bear spring trophy hunt begins in British Columbia, the Vancouver Sun published a story about a new report showing that grizzlies are being killed by humans at a rate that exceeds government-set limits. The study, by the David Suzuki Foundation and Natural Resources Defense Council, says the kill numbers don’t take into account all the grizzlies killed by collisions with vehicles, poaching and other causes. Read the story here.
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