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IGBC Winter Meeting Concludes

December 17, 2012 Jackson Hole, Town of Jackson No Comments
Grizzly-Bear

By the end of their winter meeting last week, members of the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee affirmed their commitment to utilize controlled hunting of grizzly bears as one of several management tools once the bear is delisted.  Spokesman Gregg Losinski says managers recognized that the bear as a delisted species has the potential to cause a lot of conflicts with humans, and that they have a limited number of management tools before they have to result to what he calls “a more final solution.”  Losinski says the IGBC sees hunting as a management tool for a delisted grizzly population as being much different than hunting wolves in their management.  He says among the difference is the reproduction rate for the animal, the size of the population and distribution, and so the states need to look at hunting regulations very differently if and when it occurs. With regard to the delisting debate, Losinski also says the report on the study of White Bark Pine as a dwindling food source revealed the research has taken a broader focus than just a singular food source.  Losinski says the IGBC researchers are looking at the entire diet of the bears in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem – which in itself is unusual since it focuses specifically on Yellowstone while bears elsewhere either never had white bark pine or lost it as a food supply some time ago but are doing quite well. He says the study of the different food sources that are available through the year has led researchers quickly to the realization that bears are omnivores and they have learned to ”food-shift” when they need to.

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