SCI Foundation’s experienced conservation staff members were in the field this month working with our partner biologists.
In an ongoing research phase for the Missouri Black Bear Project, SCI Foundation staff assisted the Missouri Department of Conservation in a weeklong black bear capture session. Multiple bears were successfully captured and released after researchers recorded a number of measurements, marked bears with ear tags, and fitted a number of females with GPS tracking collars. SCI Foundation has provided critical support to this project including GPS collars and camera traps that make the capturing and tracking of bears possible.
After an absence of nearly 100 years, black bears have been steadily recolonizing Missouri’s Ozark Mountains from well-established populations in neighboring Arkansas, which reintroduced bears in the 1950’s and 60’s. Results from this continuing project will help wildlife managers understand how the state’s black bear population is growing and inform any future management decisions.
SCI Foundation’s contracted professional videographer was also in the field, recording the Missouri Black Bear Project on high-definition film and interviewing researchers and local residents for a series of upcoming videos highlighting this work. Our videographer then travelled on into the bush with biologists from the Alaska Department of Fish & Game to document the reintroduced wood bison population, snapping incredible close-up footage of the first generation of bison to be born on Alaskan soil in over a century.
Just over a year after their release into the wild, the wood bison herd have adjusted to their new habitat and wintered well. The bison are in good body condition and expecting 50-60 calves to be born this summer. Returning wood bison to their former range in Alaska was a long-term 15 year collaborative initiative and a great contribution to conservation in North America.
Read the most recent updates from the Missouri Black Bear Project and Alaska Wood Bison Reintroduction on First for Wildlife for more information. Check out our YouTube channel for videos and stay tuned to see the final video productions from this field work.
Twice a week, SCI Foundation informs readers about conservation initiatives happening worldwide and updates them on SCI Foundation’s news, projects and events. Tuesdays are dedicated to an Issue of the Week and Thursday’s Weekly Updates will provide an inside look into research and our other science-based conservation efforts. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram for more SCI Foundation news.