Bears, Grouse, and Sharing - UPDATE September 20, 2019

We heard a shot yesterday from an area where hunters baited lately, but grouse hunting season is now open, so it could have been that. Otherwise, we haven’t heard suspicious shots lately. Ruffled grouseRuffled grouseThe grouse picture is from the early 1970’s when I was doing my early bear study and saw it come sailing in to land in the woods maybe 50 feet off the gravel road. Hoping to get lucky, I grabbed my camera and lay down near that spot. I had no idea what I was facing—a brave male grouse intent on driving me away. He faced me head on, trying to peck my camera and hands. To get this side shot, I extended my right hand past him so he would turn and attack that hand, which I then quickly withdrew to hit the shutter button. Notice his erect crest. It is the sharpest picture I ever got of a grouse. I cropped it here to put emphasis on his erect crest.

Out the window, this female hairy woodpecker and red squirrel are among the competitors for sunflower seed hearts.

Hairy woodpecker femaleHairy woodpecker female Red SquirrelRed squirrel

It feels good to be able to relax a bit about bear hunting. We don’t know of any favorite bears being taken near here, although we may discover later when a bear doesn’t appear in the spring.

This nice day started with the staff celebrating a good year at the bear center, including improvements made possible by many of you.

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