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Thread: Kenai aerial wolf control delayed

  1. #1
    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    Default Kenai aerial wolf control delayed

    According to this article in the Anchorage Daily News, the Department of Fish and Game is delaying the implementation of the wolf control effort that the Board of Game approved back in January.

    A salient quote from the article:

    Doug Vincent Lang, acting director of the Division of Wildlife Conservation, said Tuesday there were gaps in the basic science foundation needed to begin predator management and later determine whether the actions succeeded in increasing moose numbers.

    "I thought it was worthwhile to spend some additional time to collect that foundational science to inform how best to proceed in the future," he said.
    Glad to hear it.

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    Member Rock_skipper's Avatar
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    As I am Brian, seen to much of this happining here in the interior. Good article.

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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian M View Post
    Glad to hear it.
    Ditto. Good to hear a voice of reason above the din.
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    It must have been opposite day down at Fish and Game. Delaying predator control and talking about scientific studies....crazy! Glad to hear it also.

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Outstanding,just maybe a seed is planted
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    I'm glad they're putting forth the money and effort into better studying the moose populations on the kenai. It is way overdue. If the refuge bear study doesn't turn out good, I think its time the state does something to count brown bear on the kenai. It will be interesting to see the results from calf mortality. My guess is brown bears take more calves then black bear, where it used to be the reverse and it wasn't even close percentage wise.
    The only bad thing is from reports I've heard from people flying the moose got hammered this winter from wolves and calves got hammered from deep snow. Spike/fork hunting is a long way away in my opinion.

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    Member Matt's Avatar
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    I wonder how many years that is going to take?

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    Quote Originally Posted by 33outdoorsman View Post
    If the refuge bear study doesn't turn out good, I think its time the state does something to count brown bear on the kenai. It will be interesting to see the results from calf mortality. My guess is brown bears take more calves then black bear, where it used to be the reverse and it wasn't even close percentage wise.
    FWIW word on the street is the refuge snagged hair from 600 some brownies on the Kenai.
    2 things:
    First I'm not positive the 600 does not include duplicates or whether that is 600+ individuals. I believe that they snagged hair from 600+ individual brown bear.
    Second I believe that the hair snags came ONLY from the Refuge. Extrapolation would obviously raise the total Brown Bear estimate to ????what, 800???1000???
    Either way a long, long, long way from the 250-300 figure that ADF&G has claimed for years.
    Last note, as you mention, brownies take a lot of calves. They also take ADULT moose, and I suspectwith much more regularity that we are currently aware of.

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    Forum Admin Brian M's Avatar
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    I'm assuming by the "word on the street" reference that you can't point me to any report stating such, but if such numbers are made available it would be great if you could post them up here. If those numbers are accurate, hopefully we'll see the resumption of a general season on the Kenai Peninsula. If not, well...we'll see.

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    well "word from the bio's" is that the refuge got hair snags from about 130 bears, and the extrapolation they used suggests 600-650 bears on the peninsula, about ~500 or so on fed land.
    the study and data have not yet been peer reviewed, and "word on the street" is that there are significant issues with the methodology of the fed study. i don't know to which side the study errs on.
    no word on when the study will be "officially" released.
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    homerdave thanks for that clarification. The Kenai Brown Bear situation is so politically charged it's no surprise the study is being delayed/challenged. Eventually the truth will prevail.

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    Wonder what percentage would be cubs.
    Now left only to be a turd in the forrest and the circle will be complete.Use me as I have used you

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    Member homerdave's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Amigo Will View Post
    Wonder what percentage would be cubs.
    iirc that is the one set of data that hair-snag mark-recapture dna testing can't capture.
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  14. #14
    Thewolfwatching
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    Wonder how much bear hair they will pull off the trees next year? LOL! Perhaps they should let the AK Moose Feds take over that count…. Heh…
    Quote Originally Posted by homerdave View Post
    iirc that is the one set of data that hair-snag mark-recapture dna testing can't capture.

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    Quote Originally Posted by homerdave View Post
    well "word from the bio's" is that the refuge got hair snags from about 130 bears, and the extrapolation they used suggests 600-650 bears on the peninsula, about ~500 or so on fed land.
    the study and data have not yet been peer reviewed, and "word on the street" is that there are significant issues with the methodology of the fed study. i don't know to which side the study errs on.
    no word on when the study will be "officially" released.
    I never heard any numbers, but I heard similar reports as you that the state is reviewing their study and it doesn't sound like they agree on the numbers or methodology like you say. That's what I've been in fear of from this study is poor numbers will come of it and brown bear hunting will furthermore remain on a low reproductive female quota basis. If good numbers don't come out of it, it's time the state steps in and does something to count them. I'm sure something could be included in the Intensive Management plans.

    From what it sounds like to me the refuge study is done. All the numbers are in and everything, but the state is reviewing it to see if they can agree on some numbers. I don't have scientific data to back my next statement up, just observations from myself and other hunters and residents on the Kenai; 600 to 650 is still on the low end of population numbers and wouldn't allow for many more bear to be harvested than current levels. The Kenai has averaged 30 bears shot over the last 5 years and with the 600 - 650 numbers that would already be at 5 percent of population per year. With isolated brown bear pops. such as the Kenai, biologists don't like to see harvests much more than 6 or 7 percent of the population yearly so that would mean 36 to 40 bears could be shot instead of 30 and that wont make a difference in brown bear numbers on the Kenai.

  16. #16

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    33 the feds and state are having some sort of dust-up over the Kenai brownies and I'm not really sure who the good guy is. I know usually if it's a fight I'm with the state but something weird is going on down there. Maybe homerdave can shed a little light.

    I think the main concern with brownies is breeding age female mortality, not so much male mortality so harvest limits would hinge more on how many sows get killed.

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    Quote Originally Posted by extrema View Post
    33 the feds and state are having some sort of dust-up over the Kenai brownies and I'm not really sure who the good guy is. I know usually if it's a fight I'm with the state but something weird is going on down there. Maybe homerdave can shed a little light.

    I think the main concern with brownies is breeding age female mortality, not so much male mortality so harvest limits would hinge more on how many sows get killed.
    )

    Right I'm aware its based on female mortality because that's what they're mainly concerned about with bears is overharvest of sows.
    My honest feeling is the feds didn't want to count a lot of bears so they did the methods in a way to prevent a high count. If 130 bears is all the samples they can collect they did something wrong. I could set up 10 bait stations on the tustumena ridge and count 130 bear, in a small area to boot. They setup over 100 stations over a pretty large area and that's all they can count? I don't buy it.
    Again we don't have any real numbers yet so hard to say for sure what happened or was counted. I was just hoping to get good numbers so a substantial hunt could occur, but its looking like the study isn't turning out good and setting up to be another fight between the feds and the state.

  18. #18
    Member homerdave's Avatar
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    i have it on pretty good authority that the "10 sow" top end may be not terribly adhered to (on orders from "above") this year while the drawing and registration hunt overlap. there will be no more drawing hunts as long as the reg hunt is on the books, but next spring there is concern that the overharvest of sows may quash any chance at a fall hunt.
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