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Berners Bay Bears

Aaron standing next to some particularly hot feet.The purpose of this project was to field test survey methods for rapid habitat assessment and signs of its use by brown bears (brown bear quick cruise1), and to provide conservation groups and management agencies high resolution information relevant to bear habitat management in the Berners Bay estuary and near-shore uplands (Fig. 1). Berners Bay was an ideal place to perform a trial of the brown bear quick cruise (BBQC) because it enabled us to add new habitat variables to our existing test record, including: large mainland river location, the presence of black bears, and the presence of moose. Although SEAWEAD did not conduct this research with the intention of gathering data suitable for detailed analysis, we were able to survey critical seasonal feeding areas and traditional travel routes. The resultant data are relevant to an environmental assessment of a proposed road in the area. Funding and in-kind support were provided by Friends of Berners Bay, the Skaggs Foundation, Sierra Club Juneau Chapter, and the US Fish and Wildlife Service. Field crew support was provided by Ayme Johnson and Aaron Wells.

Click here to check out the Berners Bay report (5 megabytes). Click here for a low resolution version.