bear_nutrition.pdf - National Park Service U.S. Department...

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Primary components of annual black bear diets included grasses (24.2%), berries (16.8%), and ants (31.2%), withconsumption of vertebrates less than 12%. Consumption of grasses, berries, and small mammals vary by season.Important sources of protein in spring are from insects and ungulates; in summer from insects and small mammals;and in autumn from insects and small mammals. Principal sources of crude fat came in the summer from ungulates.The only significant sources of gross energy were ungulates in spring and ants during autumn. Compared to theprevious study, scientists found grass more frequently and ants less frequently in the black bear diets. (The bark beetleoutbreak in the park may open the forest landscape, resulting in more bear food sources such as berries.) In this study,scientists found anthropogenic (human) foods were about 15 timesmore commonly utilized than in 1984-1991.The increased use of human foods likely has contributed to increases in observed body size, body condition, andpopulation growth rate for bears, as reported in another aspect of the study.
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Term
Fall
Professor
barbarab.beckerman
Tags
American Black Bear, Rocky Mountain National Park

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