Saturday, November 6, 2010
Black Bears Of The Vermilon River
Bears are hunted in the area and further north in a peculiarly cruel way. They are baited in the fall when they are trying to get ready to hibernate. Food to attract them is hung in a tree, and the brave hunter sits in a tree stand waiting for the bear. The hunter is of course escorted to the area by some local know as trapper Dan, or Harry or whatever.
The top photo is a bit of a dicey situation as he is a young bear trying to make it on his own for the first time. Mother bears keep the young males longer because the male bears will kill them as territory interlopers, but all bears have to go on their own eventually.Bears have poor eyesight, and the bear in photo 2 is trying to figure out what we are. There was no breeze to carry any scent and apart from the camera sound we were quiet. Number 3 is just after I got the camera, I was trying to shoot a bird in a tree, and I should have been more aware because the song birds had gone silent, but I had seen a hawk earlier on. Bears despite their bulk are masters at moving through thick bush silently. Boomer was not with me or he would have alerted me by steping between me and the bear. As soon as I moved the bears (there was a cub with the mother) disappeared, but she spooked me and the shot is out of focus. I don't always take Boom as sometimes it's just too hot for him, and I don't take him in hunting season as he looks too much like a wolf.
As I said earlier this is not a park or sanctuary, it is a wilderness forest.