Scat Party!

Hi!  I haven’t  written in a while.  Lots of stuff been going on,  although some of it health issues.  Spent a couple of months  in a depression, then been working my way out of it  over the last few months or so.

But, but… but – everything is getting so much  better!  Work  (my day job) has stabilized, and my hobby-activities are going well.  The Sandia Mountain Bear Collaborative has been collecting bear scat through much of last year.  Students at Sandia High School have done a lot of scat analysis to find out what the bears are eating in different seasons.

What we are seeing – in the Sandia Mountains – is  that  bears eat a lot of grasses and green stuff (also known as “forbs”) in the spring when they first awake from hibernation.  Over the spring and summer, they eat the berries,  fruits,  cactus tunas, acorns, and bear corn as the year progresses and these items are available.  My concern this year is that since it has been such a dry year, the bears will come down the mountains and into town to get calories.  If they can access bird feeders and trash cans,  they will eat their way  through them,  and  as someone from NM Fish and Game says  “a fed bear is a dead bear.”  They become habituated,  and cannot always be removed to another location, so they end up being killed to protect people.

A group of us processed the last of last years’ scat today.  We put it through sieves and tried to identify what was in it.  Here’s a picture of some separated scat.  The reddish-looking pile on the right shows the bear ate  a  lot of bear corn.

20180408_133616

Once we were done, we had a great meal cooked by my husband – after washing up, of course!  Really not a bad way to spend a Sunday.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s