Author Topic: The Bear Necessities  (Read 854 times)

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ZOldDude

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The Bear Necessities
« on: October 13, 2005, 12:00:02 am »
October 2005
 
           
 The Bear Necessities
           
 David Codrea
           
 ?I love you, I love you, I love you, I love you.? ? Timothy Treadwell, setting up his video camera inches from a grizzly bear.
?Grunt. Snort. Crunch. Snap. Munch. Gulp.? ? Grizzly, loosely translated as, ?I love you, too.?

From the stuffed Teddy?s many of us grew up with, to popular icons like Smokey and Yogi, Americans anthropomorphize bears. Almost reflexively, we assign characteristics of cuteness and cuddliness to these savage and powerful beasts.


Filmmaker Treadwell fancied himself at one with Alaskan grizzlies, imagining he had developed a special bond with the creatures he recklessly approached. Despite warnings from park rangers and wildlife biologists, Treadwell continually returned to Katmai National Park each summer and broke all the rules, even nearing them at feeding. His books and films earned him a following among na?ve romantics, and he became a guest on national television shows.


The ultimate results were predictable. Treadwell and a girlfriend were mauled to death, eaten alive. Arriving rangers had to dispatch two of the animals. In a way, he did become one with them, and possibly not unexpectedly. He had been quoted as saying he ?would be honored to end up in bear scat.?


Most of us are not as foolhardy as the honored Mr. Treadwell, and exhibit caution in the wild and respect for its denizens. Still, most are also not trained in bear encounters, and a combination of ignorance, ill fortune and law all contribute to the thankfully rare occurrences when bears attack and kill.


Still, people are drawn to wilderness and, no matter their prudent precautions there will always be the risk of an encounter with a dangerous animal. So what can we do?


Aside from the obvious, safely keeping food and disposing trash, and never approaching to where an attack is likely, ?experts? give differing advice based on their biases. Some advise wearing ?bear bells? to warn animals of your approach and to reduce the chance of surprising them. Others advocate carrying pepper spray, and point to instances where it has proven effective.


The problem is, U.S. Geological Survey researcher Tom Smith has documented cases where pepper spray has proven to be an attractant, and observed ?bears on their backs, paws skyward, vigorously rubbing their heads and back in the red pepper-sprayed gravel.?


Besides, imagine 1,200 pounds of snarling fury charging you at 35 mph, knowing you have an effective radius of about 10 feet to center-hit your target. What does that give you, less than 1/5 of a second to stake your life on?


How about protecting yourself with the most effective deterrent, a firearm?


Ironically, some of the most likely places to encounter a grizzly are in our National Parks, where ?possession or use of firearms or other weapons in all areas is prohibited.? The feds apparently think the solution to poaching is to outlaw self defense ? leaving us with bells and seasoning instead of weapons.


There?s a grim joke circulating among hunting enthusiasts on the internet: How do you identify bear scat?


It has little bells in it and smells like pepper.

*While we crash and burn, small, low tech, agrarian societies such as the Hmong in the mountains of Laos will continue on without so much as blinking an eye.*

Johnathanfon

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Re: The Bear Necessities
« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2009, 02:39:58 pm »
          A bear cat is very curious about what happen in his or her surroundings.


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[TKC]Symantic

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Re: The Bear Necessities
« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2009, 06:54:55 pm »
z watch the news, NRA beat those tree hugging bear scat wana bees.
Enjoy your creative game-play, whatever that may include.

ZOldDude

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Re: The Bear Necessities
« Reply #3 on: July 02, 2009, 08:27:32 pm »
z watch the news, NRA beat those tree hugging bear scat wana bees.

Your Right to Arms should not end when entering a National Park.
I have my sidearm with me all the time.

*While we crash and burn, small, low tech, agrarian societies such as the Hmong in the mountains of Laos will continue on without so much as blinking an eye.*