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Effects of Tree Crushing on Black Bear Predation on Moose Calves

Charles C. Schwartz and Albert W. Franzmann
Bears: Their Biology and Management
Vol. 5, A Selection of Papers from the Fifth International Conference on Bear Research and Management, Madison, Wisconsin, USA, February 1980 (1983), pp. 40-44
DOI: 10.2307/3872518
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/3872518
Page Count: 5
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Effects of Tree Crushing on Black Bear Predation on Moose Calves
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Abstract

Mortality of young moose calves (Alces alces gigas) was evaluated on the Kenai Peninsula, Alaska, during spring and early summer 1977 and 1978. Studies were conducted both inside and outside of a 461-ha browse-rehabilitated area (Willow Lake) where standing vegetation had been crushed with LeTourneau tree crushers in winter 1974-75. Uncrushed areas (control) were regrowth of vegetation that was burned by forest fire in 1947. Moose calves were radio-collared with mortality-sensor transmitters soon after birth. Black bear (Ursus americanus) predation accounted for 40-42% of the calf mortality in control areas (6 of 15 calves collared in 1977 and 10 of 24 in 1978); no calves (of 8 collared in 1978) were killed by black bears within the rehabilitated areas. Movements of 23 radio-collared black bears were also monitored during 1978 and 1979. Radio-collared bears, including 15 whose home ranges bordered or included rehabilitated areas, either did not utilize or avoided crushed sections. Results of our studies indicated that neonatal mortality of moose calves was significantly reduced within browse-rehabilitated areas.

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