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Chisos Bear article

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Offline Quatro

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Chisos Bear article
« on: November 22, 2016, 10:53:59 PM »
Most of the article has been well discussed here, but there was this:

"The popular Lost Mine trail has been closed nearly a month, and some Chisos backcountry campsites are off limits; officials will wait until at least three consecutive days without a bear sighting by patrolling rangers before they reopen the trail."

But I also read the comments  :eusa_doh:  and learned that only an idiot goes into the wilderness unarmed.  A more accurate statement is probably that only an idiot reads the comments section.  So I guess I'm an idiot two times over.

http://www.mystatesman.com/news/news/with-black-bears-making-a-comeback-big-bend-is-war/ntCXc/

When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro - HST

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Offline jake.the.snake

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Re: Chisos Bear article
« Reply #1 on: November 22, 2016, 11:22:19 PM »
Great post! Thanks for sharing! :)


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"We don't follow no crowd, it follows us."

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Offline House Made of Dawn

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Re: Chisos Bear article
« Reply #2 on: November 22, 2016, 11:42:12 PM »

So I guess I'm an idiot two times over.


 :welcome: to my club.
"The trick, William Potter, is not minding that it hurts."

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Offline mule ears

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Re: Chisos Bear article
« Reply #3 on: November 23, 2016, 06:33:06 AM »
One of the better articles I have seen (outside of the readers comments  :eusa_doh:)  My thoughts have been what happens to all those bears when the next drought hits or even normal rainfall.
temperatures exceed 100 degrees F
minimum 1 gallon water per person/day
no shade, no water
http://40yearsofwalking.wordpress.com/

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Offline House Made of Dawn

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Re: Chisos Bear article
« Reply #4 on: November 23, 2016, 11:07:27 AM »
One of the better articles I have seen (outside of the readers comments  :eusa_doh:)  My thoughts have been what happens to all those bears when the next drought hits or even normal rainfall.

Exactly, ME.  Especially considering that this year's abundant rains will probably lead to increased embyro implantation even as I'm typing this, which means even more cubs born next year. I will say that some mid-term climate models point counter-intuitively to slightly cooler, wetter conditions in Texas, particularly fall through spring. If true, I suspect some of that would extend even to Big Bend. So it's possible we're seeing the advent of a new normal in BIBE, for at least a while. If so, here come the bears. If not, there go the bears: some would either emigrate south and be absorbed into the mother population in Mexico, or they'd starve and fail to reproduce; either way the BIBE population would drop. But before those things happened, there would probably be a period of aggressive competition for local resources until population and carrying-capacity equalized. That would be interesting...in the sense of the old Chinese curse, "may you have an interesting year." Time will tell. It's a bit like trying to read the future through a crystal ball.
"The trick, William Potter, is not minding that it hurts."

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Offline House Made of Dawn

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Re: Chisos Bear article
« Reply #5 on: November 23, 2016, 06:26:27 PM »
Just got off the phone with Ranger Skiles, the park wildlife biologist. I didn't ask permission to quote him, but I think I can relate a few things. First, his opinion is that after a string of particularly wet years, the Black Bear population is probably at its highest since extirpation in the early part of the 20th century. Second, he expects climatic conditions to continue to fluctuate between normal extremes of wet and dry  - as they have historically - with perhaps a longterm drying trend. Third, the most recent crippling drought was only a few years ago (2011-12) and that one killed off a lot of the mast-producing trees, so there are some current limits on bear-friendly food sources in the Chisos. Still, the mountains offer by far the best food resources for the larger bear population that is preparing to den up for the winter (denning will begin in earnest in January). Statistically, the likelihood of bear/human encounters has increased this fall in the Chisos. Fourth, It will take a good long while for the drought-depleted resources to recover. So if BIBE has another dry spell anytime soon, there will be an imbalance between population and the ecosystem's carrying capacity. In that case, there will probably be some emigration to Mexico, but many bears may suffer the same die-offs as during the last drought.
"The trick, William Potter, is not minding that it hurts."

 


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