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Thread: Fatal Bear attacks

  1. #1

    Exclamation Fatal Bear attacks

    With the death of the eleven year old Sam Ives in Utah this last week, I ran across this list of fatal bear attacks:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...rica_by_decade

    I guess when you look at this from a statistical perspective, bear attacks are so rare to the population that they really become insignificant. However it is hard to tell that to the families of missing people lost to bear attacks.

    In my life I have seen many bears and had the opportunity to harvest a few.
    It is strange to me to read about people who have never seen a bear in the wild. I loose sight of the fact that the general public have no idea that they are treading the same trails that bears have been using for millions of years. It amazes me that we are not seeing more human fatalities from our encounters with wildlife.

    While out hunting and camping this year I would encourage everyone to be prepared for the worst but enjoy every opportunity we can to spend time with our kids in the great outdoors.

    Happy Hunting.....Bigmnt

  2. #2

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    I think it's interesting that in the 2000's, only 3 incidents were in Alaska. I would expect that number to be MUCH higher. 5/13 in the 90's.... I'm sure the list isn't large enough to be anything more than a sample but I'd guess it's fairly representative.

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    Too bad the list dosen't include just attacks...with bears killed and or with injuries listed.....think that the numbers would be 10x the fatality number.

    jedi

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    Member Bear Buster's Avatar
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    Default bear encounters

    Very interesting info about bear incounters/attacks.

    http://www.absc.usgs.gov/research/br...erbay/glba.htm

  5. #5

    Thumbs up Thanks Bear Buster

    Very informative site.

    Bigmnt

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    Member COtoAK's Avatar
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    2nd that.
    Thanks for posting it.
    We had 2 grizzlies killed down the street from us on Thursday.
    (Freeman Rd and Nordale Rd) which is just on the otherside of the pipeline from us.

    Almost too close for comfort.
    Lurker.

  7. #7
    Mark
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    Quote Originally Posted by nwsak View Post
    I think it's interesting that in the 2000's, only 3 incidents were in Alaska. I would expect that number to be MUCH higher. 5/13 in the 90's.... I'm sure the list isn't large enough to be anything more than a sample but I'd guess it's fairly representative.
    Key words on the site:

    This list is incomplete; you can help by expanding it.
    The other day a friend showed me a file that his brother-in-law had researched at the UAF library. It was a collection of bear attack stories in Alaska pre-1920. Apparently the territorial governor wanted to implement some predator control and east coast liberals inundated Congress with a letter campaign, so Alaskans responded with reports on bear attacks. (With politics, there is nothing new under the sun). It was absolutely amazing to read some of these accounts (lots of poor handwriting).

    I've exchanged emails over the years with Larry Kaniut, author of "Alaska Bear Tales" book series, and emailed him notifying him of the information. He was interested, so my friend's brother-in-law is going to contact him.

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    Member Bear Buster's Avatar
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    Default info from report

    If you read somewhere close to the bottom.......pepper spray only worked 5 out of 8 times.

    I bet the 500 S&W would be 8 for 8

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    Member Flintlock's Avatar
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    Default Another site

    Here is another website to add to the fray..

    http://tafkac.org/animals/bear_attacks.html

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    The Wikipedia article is fascinating reading. Noticeably absent from the list however is the much publicized, savage attack which occurred at Laird Hot Springs B.C. in August 1997. That incident resulted in two deaths and two injuries.

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    Default Bear Attacks in AK

    In Larry Kaniuts' Book "More Alaska Bear Stories", He lists approximately 40 more fatal bear attacks that have occured in Alaska in the last 100 years. You do not have to fear the bears - Just give them the respect they deserve! If bears were out to eat or attack us there would be exponentially more fatalities than what there are. If people would educate themselves before entering the "bears backyard" and use a little common sense there would be fewer fatalities.

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    Default New Bear Safety Website

    For great sources of advice on bear safety, check out
    www.bear-viewing-in-alaska.info

    This site directs you to all sorts of cutting-edge safety information, whether your preferred method of coping with bears is avoidance, deterrence, diplomacy, or destruction. There is detailed information on how to:

    * "negotiate" with a bear that isn't aggressive, in order to minimize risk that it will become aggressive.

    * "negotiate" with a bear that is aggressive to cool it down (most serious maulings are defensive, so trying to scare bear away is often the worst thing you can do.)

    * use pepper spray, flares or other tools to deter bears.

    * use a rifle or shotgun to cripple and kill a bear. One of the safety manuals listed shows the location of each major organ and limb bone from front and side views, and how these positions change as a bear is charging.

    In the hands of an expert, a gun can be extremely effective -- although there may not be time to use it in the event of a charge from close range, given that bears can run at roughly 35mph (15 ft/sec). By contrast, in the hands of someone who is not an expert at shooting under extreme stress, and who does not know where to place shots to hit the brain, spine or heart, guns are much less effective than pepper spray.

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    Member Bear Buster's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaughingBear View Post
    For great sources of advice on bear safety, check out
    www.bear-viewing-in-alaska.info

    This site directs you to all sorts of cutting-edge safety information, whether your preferred method of coping with bears is avoidance, deterrence, diplomacy, or destruction. There is detailed information on how to:

    * "negotiate" with a bear that isn't aggressive, in order to minimize risk that it will become aggressive.

    * "negotiate" with a bear that is aggressive to cool it down (most serious maulings are defensive, so trying to scare bear away is often the worst thing you can do.)

    * use pepper spray, flares or other tools to deter bears.

    * use a rifle or shotgun to cripple and kill a bear. One of the safety manuals listed shows the location of each major organ and limb bone from front and side views, and how these positions change as a bear is charging.

    In the hands of an expert, a gun can be extremely effective -- although there may not be time to use it in the event of a charge from close range, given that bears can run at roughly 35mph (15 ft/sec). By contrast, in the hands of someone who is not an expert at shooting under extreme stress, and who does not know where to place shots to hit the brain, spine or heart, guns are much less effective than pepper spray.
    That's an opinion and not FACT!

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    Mark
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bear Buster View Post
    Originally Posted by LaughingBear
    ......In the hands of an expert, a gun can be extremely effective -- although there may not be time to use it in the event of a charge from close range, given that bears can run at roughly 35mph (15 ft/sec). By contrast, in the hands of someone who is not an expert at shooting under extreme stress, and who does not know where to place shots to hit the brain, spine or heart, guns are much less effective than pepper spray.
    That's an opinion and not FACT!
    Let's give "science" plenty of chance to "prove" itself.

    And "effective" is a much more broad word than "is", if you know what I mean...........

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    Let's give "science" plenty of chance to "prove" itself.

    And "effective" is a much more broad word than "is", if you know what I mean...........

    Yeah......25% could be considered effective not EFFECTIVE enough for me......I'll go with S&W 500..... 100% effective on BEAR attacks to date

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    Default Opinions vs. facts

    Quote Originally Posted by Bear Buster View Post
    That's an opinion and not FACT!

    Attacks were prevented in on 68% of 258 firearm defenses, contrasted to 94% of roughly 80 pepper spray defenses analyzed by researchers. (Dr.s Tom Smith, Steve Herrero, Terry DeBruyn, and K Wilder; Wildlife Society Bulletin: Efficacy of Bear Deterrent Spray in Alaska). The WS article came out recently as did a popular summary in the Alaska Magazine.

    I attribute much of the greater effectiveness of spray to the facts that
    a. Not everyone shooting bears in defensive situations are skilled with a rifle or shotgun, much less at shooting under high stress.

    b. In the hands of unskilled people, spray is far easier to use effectively than is a rifle or shotgun.

    c. Even in the hands of an expert marksman, spray can be quicker to use; and spray is always on your belt, whereas a rifle or shotgun may be set aside while cooking, fishing, butchering game, etc.

    d. A S&W 500 may be the ideal weapon in the hands of some shooters. But a lot of people flinch or shut their eyes when shooting a rifle that powerful; and the kick throws the barrel far off target, which adds to the delay in getting off multiple shots. Many people are better served with a 338 magnum because it's enough to do the job (e.g., with Barnes X bullets and at least 200 grains of powder), but has a light enough kick to be used confidently.

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    Default Laird Hotsprings attack

    Quote Originally Posted by lasgun View Post
    The Wikipedia article is fascinating reading. Noticeably absent from the list however is the much publicized, savage attack which occurred at Laird Hot Springs B.C. in August 1997. That incident resulted in two deaths and two injuries.
    One of the most "interesting" points about that attack was that it was inflicted by a single bear moving from person to person. Had those people not scattered, but grouped together, the first fatality might have been the only one. For we have no record in North America of any bear attacking a group of at least 6 people -- a group being people within 1-2 arm's lengths of each other.

  18. #18
    Mark
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    Quote Originally Posted by LaughingBear View Post
    ......I attribute much of the greater effectiveness of spray to the facts that
    a. Not everyone shooting bears in defensive situations are skilled with a rifle or shotgun, much less at shooting under high stress.....
    People are more skilled at spraying charging bears?

    How did they gain this skill?

    b. In the hands of unskilled people, spray is far easier to use effectively than is a rifle or shotgun.
    How is this so?

    Ever see a bullet being blown back into the shooter by the wind?...........

    c. Even in the hands of an expert marksman, spray can be quicker to use; and spray is always on your belt, whereas a rifle or shotgun may be set aside while cooking, fishing, butchering game, etc.
    That's why I carry a handgun in my waistband in addition to my hunting or "carry" rifle.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mark View Post
    People are more skilled at spraying charging bears?

    How did they gain this skill?



    How is this so?

    Ever see a bullet being blown back into the shooter by the wind?...........



    That's why I carry a handgun in my waistband in addition to my hunting or "carry" rifle.
    Let them believe what they want....bear bells and bear spray...Gods way of thinning the herd

  20. #20

    Default Well, another bearspray infiltration

    Okokok.. Nobody was talking about bearspray here either, but here they come.
    We need a bearspray site just to clean things up.
    Here's what USGS says about bearspray. The punch line is " If that didn't work, and you are still alive, blast them with 12 gauge slugs!
    Ok the bearspray guys are everywhere, I think they are on commission.
    http://www.absc.usgs.gov/research/br...afeconduct.htm

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