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Greenup Means Bear Food - UPDATE May 13, 2021  

Plants are busting out all over from the forest floor. A major one is this favorite: large-leafed aster. In my old days of walking with bears, they made this a main food for the first couple weeks when the leaves were still in their furled and furry form. Large-leafed Aster 5-12-21Large-leafed Aster 5-12-21At this fast-growing stage, nutrients are mostly in a highly digestible fluid form and secondary compounds are still minimal. Secondary compounds are the distasteful chemicals that protect them from being eaten. When the leaves enlarge and spread, they are past their time of desirability, and the bears turn to other foods. More tomorrow.

Thank you for all you do,
Lynn Rogers, Biologist, Wildlife Research Institute and North American Bear Center


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