When I Build a Bear, It’s a Boy Who Likes to Be Seen
- by admin
When I build a bear, it’s a boy who likes to be seen.
And when it’s seen, it can’t help but like to be heard.
A little boy, no less.
“Bears have the ability to speak their mind,” writes a writer for the Wall Street Journal.
“They can speak about the way their parents raised them, and they can say whatever they want, and when they get angry, they can yell.
Bears are great at getting their point across.”
So why aren’t there more bears?
I can’t think of a single answer.
What about bears in the wild?
Not surprisingly, the answer is a resounding no.
“We’ve been seeing a lot of bears in captivity,” says Karen L. Miller, director of wildlife research at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo.
“And it’s all over the place.”
Bison were first domesticated in North America more than a century ago.
The first bears were captured in Siberia.
By the end of the 19th century, there were over 1,000,000 in the United States alone.
(In the mid-1930s, there had been fewer than 1,200.)
The largest bear population in the world is in California, where there are roughly 300 bears in its wild.
The largest in the country is in the U.S. Virgin Islands, with more than 3,000.
Some of these bear populations were originally from Russia, and others are from China and Central America.
“You’re talking about the bears that were living in the mountains, the bears who had never been exposed to human life,” says L. J. Patterson, a conservation biologist at the University of Wyoming who has been studying bear populations for years.
“Those were the bears in Russia, the ones that we thought were the wild bears.”
Bear populations in Russia and Central Asia have plummeted in recent years, with just five populations remaining.
There are a handful of grizzly bears in Alaska, and in the Arctic.
But there’s also an abundance of brown bears, an extinct species that thrived in the Bering Sea, where bears once roamed.
Bipedal bears, a subspecies of the bear, are a different story.
“It’s just that these are animals that can’t be caught, so there’s no one to catch them,” says Miller.
Bears also can’t thrive in the harsh, cold environments of the Arctic, where temperatures plummet to -80 degrees Fahrenheit (-35 Celsius) and ice caps shrink to a few feet thick.
“What we have in the North is just a different bear population,” says Patterson.
“There are bears everywhere, but there’s nothing to see or do.”
So it’s up to humans to save them.
Bear population trends are difficult to gauge, but a growing number of scientists agree that the bears of North America are declining.
“The question is: Is it going to continue to decline?” asks Patterson.
The answer, he says, is probably no.
If the population declines, there’s going to be a greater chance that a bear will starve to death, and it’s likely that bears will also be less likely to live in areas where human-caused habitat destruction is happening.
But this is not a black and white situation.
“If you have a population that’s not responding to human intervention, and you see that decline, you’re likely to see a resurgence,” Patterson says.
In fact, a recent study in the journal Science found that in the 21st century, bear populations in Alaska are actually on the decline.
“When we look at bear populations that have gone down, we see them going up and up and increasing,” says Daniel J. Smith, a biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.
“So there’s always an opportunity to reverse that trend.”
So what do you do if you see a bear?
You can’t do anything to help, but you can try to help it.
“Do you see the bear?” the question asks.
If so, you should raise your voice, says Patterson, who says that the best way to show your support is to stand next to a bear and yell, “Hey, look at me!”
When a bear gets excited, he’s going for the tail.
So you can do the same thing by raising your arm.
“That’s a great way to get the bear’s attention,” says Smith.
“Then you can say, ‘Hey, come on, let’s play, buddy,'” says Patterson of the more traditional way to greet a bear.
Bear-baiting is an old way to keep bears at bay, but it’s no longer the only way.
“A lot of bear baiting is very simple,” says Jones, who is also the head of the University’s Bear and Wildlife Conservation Program.
“Put something in their food and they’ll eat it.
And the more they eat, the more you can trap them.” You
When I build a bear, it’s a boy who likes to be seen.And when it’s seen, it can’t help but…