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Black Bear (Ursus americanus)

In some areas, tetracycline biomarking and noninvasive DNA sampling is being used as means of estimating black bear populations. DNA-based mark-recapture population estimates using barbed wire bear hair traps with scent lures have been implemented in a few areas.

In the Upper Tanana and White River drainages blueberry abundance has been monitored at five permanent blueberry sample areas to compare berry production between years and sites, and to evaluate effects of berry abundance on bear harvest and problem bear incidents. A DNA-based mark–recapture population estimate using barbed wire bear hair traps with scent lures was conducted in 2006.

Biologists would like to know more about Alaska’s black bears. Research is needed to identify possible correlations between sealing data and population trends. A better understanding of the short- and long-term impacts of clearcut logging on black bear populations is needed. Some estimate of black bear mortality as a result of wounding loss is needed.

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