Bear Management Transformation
We are working to encourage bear management practices that value the lives of individual grizzlies, so that people living and recreating in grizzly country are able to safely engage with bears when they encounter them in the wild.
About the Project
State wildlife agencies have developed the practice of treating wildlife more like livestock than as integral parts of a living landscape. When it comes to so-called “problem” grizzlies – bears that find themselves in marginal habitat on the edges of human development – managers reach too quickly for the easy solution of killing the bear.
Explorer bears, in particular, suffer from these heavy-handed tactics. These bears are pioneers that travel between habitats, and are essential to genetic diversity and the long-term survival of grizzlies south of Canada.
Once roaming freely from the West Coast to the Great Plains, and from Alaska to central Mexico, grizzlies now occupy only a handful of isolated pockets in the lower 48 states. With climate change severely restricting traditional food sources, bears require the ability to move to survive. For these reasons, bears with the inclination to make a long, dangerous trek into new territory are critically important.
Our goal is to encourage bear management practices that value the lives of individual grizzlies, so that people living and recreating in grizzly country are able to safely engage with bears when they encounter them. To that end, we are actively pursuing legal options to change the way state and federal agencies handle bear management, to reflect a more integrated, Indigenous perspective.