#WellsGrayArea, #CentralB.C., #Canada, #NorthCascade, #UnitedStates #grizzlybears
Toronto, Mar 18 (IBNS): The Wells Gray area of central B.C.-- which housed 317 grizzlies in 2012, nearly one fourth of all the grizzly bears in North America -- along with a larger area in northwest Montana have been chosen by United States authorities for the possible sources from which grizzly bears can be reintroduced at The North Cascade area in U.S, media reports said.
grizzly bear: Wikipedia
The North Cascade once was populated by thousands of grizzly bears but overtime have become extinct and now had fewer than 10 and since 1996 even these bears could not be seen on the U.S. side of the border.
After assessing large remote wilderness habitat of the North Cascade area the U.S. federal Government said about 200 grizzlies could be accommodated in it.
"Grizzly bears are a wilderness icon. They have enormous benefits for ecosystems … and they're essentially a missing piece here," said Joe Scott of Conservation Northwest, a Washington-based environmental group that's been working on the issue for decades, CBCNews reports said.
A post by Kim Michels in Joe Scott’s facebook account reads, “After decades of research, the National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and other agencies have released proposals to support recovery of this iconic species. This is welcome news, and a historic conservation opportunity. But just how do we restore these magnificent animals?
Follow the story of grizzly bear recovery in Montana’s Cabinet Mountains, through the lens of Ecologist and bear expert Chris Morgan. Grizzly recovery in the Cabinet Mountains, done through science and community involvement, could serve as a model for the North Cascades.
Learn more and help #SavetheCascadesGrizzly at northcascadesgrizzly.org”.
The proposal of U.S. federal agency to capture B.C. grizzly bears using baited traps, transport and deposit these by helicopter to their final remote destinations to Washington State was met with very favorably due to an online campaign by cartoonist, The Oatmeal.
A tweet by Herald in Joe Scott’s facebook account reads, “Popular web cartoonist The Oatmeal brought his new game "Bears vs. Babies" to Arlington. Fun! http://bit.ly/2lVjMjM “
The National Parks Service (NPS) said that this proposal of reintroduction of grizzly bears to the North Cascades ecosystem in Washington State was favored by more than 1000,000 people.
Upon the request byf the members of the public and local elected officials for an extension to the comment period, NPS and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (UFWS) decided to extend the public comment period through April 28, 2017.
"Because it's happening in a national park and because grizzly bears are something that people are passionate about [on both sides] ... it's not surprising that we have a large number of comments," said Denise Schultz of the North Cascades NPS, CBCNews reports said.
The agencies such as Conservation Northwest, the National Wildlife Federation, and The Oatmeal had been supporting the U.S. proposal to initially move 25 bears over the next five to 10 years, then monitor the behaviour and adaptability of those bears.
It was also decided that the source group selected for the grizzly bears eat the same kinds of food as the landlocked North Cascades. The agencies had also taken care that the bears were in stable condition and could survive after separation from the young bears.
Scott hoped that B.C. people would agree to supply a couple of bears over several years.
He also hoped that Canadians who lived around Wells Gray would help and support the U.S. with their efforts.
When CBCNews expressed interest to discuss the grizzly plan, the B.C. Ministry of Environment refused adding that they would have to wait to get an answer till the U.S. government had taken the decision on this issue.
There was no agreement at that time to move B.C. bears to Washington, Schultz of the NPS confirmed and added more discussion and negotiations remains to be done before any conclusion is reached, which can be early 2018.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)