Take a Bear’s-Eye View of the World

By ABC News

Jan 15, 2012 7:30am
abc bear cam 120114 wblog Take a Bears Eye View of the World

(ABC)

ABC News’Frank Elaridi reports:

If you ever wanted to see the world through a bear’s eyes, The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has just the thing for you.

From research cameras attached to a 700-pound Alaskan brown bears, the ADF&G,  a Division of Wildlife Conservation, has posted clips on its website of the bear breeding with another bear and eating moose, among the footage.

“The clips are quite short, so you only get a glimpse of what they are up to,” State biologist Bruce Dale said after viewing the video. “If they are not sleeping, you really want to see the next clip to find out what happens next.”

Wildlife biologists with the ADF&G mounted prototype video cameras and GPS location recorders on the collar of four brown bears in the Copper River Basin in May of 2011. The camera devices are designed to take a 20-second video clip (with audio) and record a GPS location every 15 minutes. The research effort is part of the Nelchina Brown Bear Project, and offers a look at the world from a brown bear’s point of view.

The video offers a new insight into the life of bears.

“It’s surprising just how active they are when they are active, they are doing something with purpose,” Dale said. “It was also surprising the lack of time spent foraging on vegetation, they are not spending a lot of time digging tubers and that sort of thing. Instead these bears are eating lots of meat this time of year.”

The project, called “A Bear’s Eye View: A Day in the Life of a Bear” can be seen on the ADF&G website.

According to the ADF&G website, the bear in this particular video is called Boar 6041, and is a 10-year-old male brown bear in the Copper River Basin of South Central Alaska.

Some highlights of the video are listed on the ADF&G website:

3:32 a.m. he’s breeding with a female bear, and at 4:02 there’s a good view of her ear and head. Later in the day he’ll mate again with a different female.

4:47 is breakfast time. He’s eating a pile of fish by a lake, presumably winter-killed. Another short clip (also available for viewing as part of this collection) made a day earlier shows him eating from this same pile of fish, so it seems he found this resource earlier, ate some, and has returned.

5:02 he’s pawing at the water, perhaps pulling some submerged fish carcasses up to shore. He then goes back to eating the beached fish. He’s still eating fish at 5:17, but then lays down for a rest.

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