Annual Bear Management and Incident Report, Yosemite National Park, 1980

Courtesy Yosemite National Park

Cella, W. B. and J. A. Keay. 1980. Annual bear management and incident report, Yosemite National Park. Unpublished manuscript. 25pp.

ABSTRACT: Reported frontcountry bear incidents and property damage have been reduced over 91 percent since the implementation of the Human/Bear Management Plan in 1975. The backcountry, which represents 90 percent of the Park, has not experienced a decline in human/bear conflicts. Data suggest that backcountry users alone suffered an estimated 3,350 bear incidents costing $57,525 during 1980. Although frontcountry bear activity has decreased drastically, alterations in bear behavior due to human food availability and a high number of bear/human interactions still continue to occur, particularly in the backcountry, thus perpetuating the problem and maintaining a high potential for bear cause human injury and mortality. Four steps are identified that, when added to the present program, will eliminate the availability of human food to bears and consequently reduce bear/human interactions, and the potential for human injury. The step of the greatest significance is the development of portable bear-proof container for backcountry users. Five years following the full implementation of the program it is anticipated that bear incidents will be reduced to an extremely low level, personal injuries caused by bears will be eliminated and the bear population will be returning to a more natural state. Implementation of the four steps is dependent on in increased funding.