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Field Study Courses

2021 Black Bear Field Study

with Lynn Rogers, PhD

Course description: TLynn Rogers PhDLynn Rogers PhDhe Black Bear Field Study courses emphasize daily up-close observation of wild bears to learn their vocalizations, body language, social organization, ecology, and how people can better coexist with bears. Courses are held at the Northwoods Research Center located west of Ely, Minnesota. Participants are housed on site for maximum participation and total immersion in bears. The small class size (8) maximizes individual opportunities to learn under the guidance of Lynn Rogers, Ph.D., as seen on the Animal Planet documentary "The Man Who Walks With Bears" and the BBC documentary 'Bearwalker of the Northwoods.' Daily discussions, presentations, and field trips serve to amplify the information learned directly from the bears.

Participants include anyone interested in bears. These workshops are life-changing for anyone who fears bears, unforgettable for people who appreciate bears, and essential for professionals who deal with bear issues. Click here for Participants' Comments.

Lorie Kennedy and Mike JohnsonResearch Assistants
Lorie Kennedy & Mike Johnson
Lynn Rogers, PhD began his bear research in 1967 and will lead most of the discussions and field excursions. Click here for his curriculum vitae.  Research assistants Lorie Kennedy and Mike Johnson conduct fieldwork for WRI and assist with Bear Courses. They know the bears well, and one or the other of them will be present to assist during each course.

Each course begins at Noon on Monday and ends on Thursday around Noon.

Course Fee:  $2,500 per participant is a donation ($2,350 is tax deductible). A non-refundable deposit of $1,250 is due at registration with the balance of $1,250 due 2 months prior to the course date. Fee includes family-style meals, group housing, course materials, certificate of completion, receipt for your tax-deductible donation to the Wildlife Research Institute (501(c)(3). Your donation for the course will be used to further our research and educational programs.

Cancellation Policy:  Deposits are returned (minus a $250 administration fee) only if the cancelled spots can be filled. If the cancelled spots cannot be filled, the deposits may be deferred and applied to any course in the following year.

Contact: Please email any questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Click here to view and download a Black Bear Field Study Course brochure.

Edited:  February 1, 2018

  • "The Wildlife Research Institute's Black Bear Field Course was one of the most exciting three days I can recall in my life."
    Neala - Minnesota 2021

  • "Dr. Rogers and his associates spent many hours with our class revealing to us a wealth of knowledge and experiences as they continue to study the black bears."
    Lynn - Iowa 2021

  • "It is a transformative experience in a very busy world to sit among bears young and old and learn about their lives."

    Rachel - Oregon 2021

  • "My unique experience has touched me in such a way, I plan on pursuing a degree in Wildlife or Animal Science."

    Kennedy - Georgia 2021

  • "There is just something magical about bears. The strong muscular body, the thick magnificent black fur and the gentle eyes always draw me in and warm my heart."
    Kristie - Georgia 2021

  • "My husband and I so enjoyed the Bear Study Course. It was wonderful to see the bears and so inspiring to listen to Dr. Lynn Rogers."
    Marianna - Georgia 2021

  • "I would have to say that to experience these magnificent creatures in nature is a once in a lifetime learning adventure."
    Randy - Wisconsin 2021


Private accommodations can be found in the area at www.ely.org at the participants own expense. Semi-private accommodations are available onsite at no cost during courses only, and only to course participants. Accommodations during the courses include a room with 2 twin beds on the first floor and a room with 2 twin beds on the second floor. The third floor has 5 twin beds along with a futon couch which converts to a full bed. There are 3 bathrooms (2 with showers).


Meals are included in the donation. Other options are available in the area at www.ely.org Flavorful meals featuring seasonal ingredients are served family-style. Every attempt is made to accommodate diet preferences and restrictions.


We provide transportation for course activities. Course participants are responsible for their own transportation to and from the Northwoods Research Center.

Before Arriving

We will answer your questions, address your concerns, send directions and suggestions of what to bring, and help you hook up with other participants to share transportation from the airports.

Our Mailing Lists

Contact Information

Wildlife Research Institute
145 West Conan Street
Ely, Minnesota 55731 USA

Email Address
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