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Factors influencing human-grizzly bear interactions in a backcountry setting

August 28, 1980

Interactins between humans and 7 species of wildlife, including grizzly bears (Ursus arctos horribilis), were investigated in backcountry areas of the Gallatin Range, Yellowstone National Park, during the summers of 1973 and 1974. Grizzly bear distribution, movements, and behavior and human behavior were examined. Because grizzlies utilized areas with elevations much in excess of the study area's average trail elevation, he likelihood of the off-trail party observing a grizzly bear was 3-4 times greater than that of a trail-traveling party. During the hiking season, grizzliess exhibited an elevational migration. The frequencies of on-trail and combined on- and off-trail observations and sign discoveries per party tended to peak during those periods that grizzlies were found at low elevations. Activitiy patterns of grizzlies at the point of first observation or after the bears had become aware of the human presence did not indicate behavioral traits likely to accentuate the possibilities of human-bear confrontations. Some backcountry travelers engaged in activites that could increase detrimental encounters with grizzly bears.

Citation Information

Publication Year 1980
Title Factors influencing human-grizzly bear interactions in a backcountry setting
DOI 10.2307/3872890
Authors James M. Chester
Publication Type Book Chapter
Publication Subtype Book Chapter
Index ID 70169345
Record Source USGS Publications Warehouse
USGS Organization Northern Rocky Mountain Science Center