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Thread: Speaking of tiny bears...(seriously)

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    Member homerdave's Avatar
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    Default Speaking of tiny bears...(seriously)

    Talking to our biologist today about this years bear sealing so far I can relate that there have been 4 bears brought by so far. Two from each side of the bay, and all were under 5'. Unfortunately this reinforces the anecdotal evidence that the bears here have been seriously impacted by harvest rates. Transporters on the outer coast have been reporting falling numbers of bears, less boars in the harvest and overall a decline in size and age of bears taken. It seems unlikely any action will be taken by the BOG until the numbers tank like they did in PWS.
    Oh well....
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    Member cod's Avatar
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    I'm not sure that the bear numbers ARE down. Maybe so, maybe not. I do know that bears are quick at a learned behavior. It wouldn't surprise me in the least that those bears in PWS are learning to stay away from open spots and beaches. The hunters there are reporting such behaviors. Things like bears leaving open areas quickly.
    Bears in Kachemac area are just as smart as PWS bears. ( probably smarter cuz they're on the Kenai side).
    Not saying there is not less bears, just not buying that they are nearly wiped out. (And not accusing you, Dave, of saying such).
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    Member homerdave's Avatar
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    Other input I have is from hikers and the state park trail crews. 3-5 years ago there were times and places where hikers nearly always ran into bears, especially in berry season. I got used to waiting for folks who were delayed because they were leery of walking by bears. That just hasn't happened in the last couple years. The trail crews have also had far fewer bear interactions in the last few years. There are ridges where in the fall I could take for granted that I would see bears up high on the berries... the last two years the ridges I always saw bears on have had ZERO! I mean where I ALWAYS would see 3-5 bears in the afternoon I saw none in the last two years, and we had amazing berry crops. If the bears were just getting spooked by pressure I would still be seeing them up high where they are not being harried.
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    Ive heard same as homerdave. I know people several years ago that would stop in seldovia and just playing around they would see several bears and shoot a 6 to 7 footer. Ive heard a few seldovia residents say they just arent seeing the numbers of bear and less big ones. I sure havent seen the black bear numbers on southern kenai the last few years that i did previously. Normally i still can spot a few nice sized boars but sure havent seen the sows with cubs recently. It may be time to take a closer look into black bear on the southern kenai.

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    Member cod's Avatar
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    I certainly don't want to see them wiped out. That said, if numbers were greatly reduced ( from the large numbers we used to see), I wouldn't be too disappointed. You'll never wipe out a predator. You may wipe out the habitat that allows them range, but you can't 'hunt' them away.
    Blackies do take their share of moose calves where available.
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    Could it be that the increased numbers of brownies are teaching the blackies to be more in "stealth" mode...???
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Member cod's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4merguide View Post
    Could it be that the increased numbers of brownies are teaching the blackies to be more in "stealth" mode...???

    I I have no doubt that the Browns have driven the Blacks out of my area of 15c. I don't believe the forested areas of Kachemak Bay and the area Dave speaks to has much of a brownie population..... Or is it increasing there too?
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    Member homerdave's Avatar
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    We have a very few brown bears in only a few areas, and the cattlemans association has pretty much whacked 'em hard. . There are almost no moose in the areas we have usually hunted black bears.
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    Quote Originally Posted by cod View Post
    You'll never wipe out a predator. You may wipe out the habitat that allows them range, but you can't 'hunt' them away.

    I'd respectfully say that there's pretty good evidence in a lot of States that once had thriving bear and wolf populations, that would disagree with that statement.
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    Supporting Member iofthetaiga's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlaskaHippie View Post
    I'd respectfully say that there's pretty good evidence in a lot of States that once had thriving bear and wolf populations, that would disagree with that statement.
    +1. There's no species on the face of the Earth, above the insects, that man is not capable of hunting into extinction.
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    Member cod's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlaskaHippie View Post
    I'd respectfully say that there's pretty good evidence in a lot of States that once had thriving bear and wolf populations, that would disagree with that statement.
    We'll just have to disagree then. Habitat, habitat, habitat, when it comes to these kind of animals. The lower 48 was ruined by people population that resulted in habitat loss for these and other species. Was not hunting them. It will, and is already getting that way up here. But as long as there are a few of them around AND they have the habitat to hide from humans, they won't disappear.
    Face it Alaskans, the best (hunting) days in Alaska are done. There will be many folks up here that will still seek the last great adventures, hunting, and of course, Hippie, the fishing. And it's hard to blame someone for 'wanting'.
    Your sarcasm is way, waaaayyyyyyyy more sarcastic than mine!

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    Kings, bear, moose...

    That's the big three right there, isn't it?

    Big four if you include halibut?

    But there's still people advocating to shoot more of something, whether it be otters, wolves, or beavers.

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    Supporting Member Amigo Will's Avatar
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    The golden bear of Califorina was well wiped out my the gun long before the loss of forrest. And if the loss of habitat is also a reason we did that too. As for shooting smaller bears I prefer a two hundred pounder than four hundred because of taste and freezer room.
    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 mike h View Post
    Kings, bear, moose...

    That's the big three right there, isn't it?
    Don't forget the "little three"... Clams, crabs and shrimp... Oh yeah, and steelhead if you wanna make it four, but they're not gone...yet.

    or grouse on the kenai
    ptarmigan in lots of places
    Mulchatna herd...
    Alaska Board of Game 2015 tour... "Kicking the can down the road"
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    Some people refuse to admit that as the ultimate alpha predator on this planet, we have responsibilities to the other animals that don't have opposable thumbs. I'd take anecdotal evidence from Dave as nearly gospel truth that the black bear population is in decline around Kachemak. I'm not willing to give up on the "best days" just yet. The animals do amazingly well if we provide them with superior habitat. There in lies the rub.

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Yup, wait for a crisis and then pick up the pieces. Usually with detrimental affects.

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    Member sayak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cod View Post
    We'll just have to disagree then. Habitat, habitat, habitat, when it comes to these kind of animals. The lower 48 was ruined by people population that resulted in habitat loss for these and other species. Was not hunting them. It will, and is already getting that way up here. But as long as there are a few of them around AND they have the habitat to hide from humans, they won't disappear.
    Face it Alaskans, the best (hunting) days in Alaska are done. There will be many folks up here that will still seek the last great adventures, hunting, and of course, Hippie, the fishing. And it's hard to blame someone for 'wanting'.
    PWS and the outer coast of the peninsula has little population and maintains good habitat, but it is the hunting pressure that is wreaking havoc. Too many people are making their money off the hunting of these animals, whether its transportation, guiding or poaching for gaul bladders and paws.

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    Member Roland on the River's Avatar
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    Homerdave, I tried to REP you but ( had to spread it around ) I like the little three post. Right on.

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    This is exactly the kind of hysteria that impacts and erodes hunting opportunities, shortens or eliminates hunting seasons ! Hysteria generated by hearsay and made up facts devoid of any scientific proof ,

    The current regime and the last six years have had a huge impact on people and most spend far less time in the field due to struggling to make ends meet, It has become too costly with expenses and loss of income from time off work, most have become opportunistic hunters and no longer seek a trophy and take the first bear they see, I see it and hear of this practice all over the state, more hunters hunt on the fringes of communities for ease of access and less impact on the wallet.

    Has anyone thought about the possibility of a huge boom in bear numbers that are now in decline returning back to normal ?

    The last thing hunters need is to have a group of self throat cutting individuals that give fuel to the anti-hunting crowd of fear mongering with their "endangered" label they are scrambling to staple on every single animal on the planet !

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    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by homerdave View Post
    It seems unlikely any action will be taken by the BOG until the numbers tank like they did in PWS.
    Oh well....
    Yeah......nothin' new here......eh?
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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