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 Post subject: Bear Blazes
PostPosted: Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:05 pm 
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Location: Magalia, California
I've been trying to record the id if bears in my neighborhood for several years. With a few exceptions it isn't easy. A lot of bears look alike, and their coat color changes with the summer molt. Bears with white blazes on throat and/or chest are unmistakable when you get a good view, though the shape of a distinctive marking can change with viewing angle and body position. If you stake your camera at rubbing trees you'll eventually get some decent pictures when they stand on their hind legs. These screen shots from videos give you an idea of the variation I see here in the Sierra Nevada foothills.

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 Post subject: Re: Bear Blazes
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 1:56 am 
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Interesting. To the uneducated and casual observer, like me, those bears all look different. Are they?

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 Post subject: Re: Bear Blazes
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 7:32 am 
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Location: Meeker, Oklahoma
Yea, they appear to be different bears by there marking and the Names you have given them on the Photos.


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 Post subject: Re: Bear Blazes
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 7:36 am 
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Interesting. Although many of the bears here in northcentral PA have white blazes I've never seen one with a blaze as large as most of those blazes. I photographed a young bear that was probably 2 1/2 years old in 2003 that had a fairly distinctive blaze. That bear showed up on camera trap photos at intervals until he was killed during bear season in 2016. At that time he weighed in excess of 640 pounds and might have grown larger had he lived longer and eaten well.

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 Post subject: Re: Bear Blazes
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 7:45 am 
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Interesting stuff


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 Post subject: Re: Bear Blazes
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 8:44 am 
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Pastor Jim -- I have lots of photos of BBFs or Big Brown Fellows. Unlike these "mugshots", BBFs look pretty much the same, but many of them are different animals. Woody, I am doing exactly what you did with your bear -- trying to keep track of them. When you can ID an animal it makes camera trapping all the more interesting.


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 Post subject: Re: Bear Blazes
PostPosted: Sun Aug 02, 2020 9:42 am 
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Great work Codger..................Elvira, that's a good name.
It sure makes it a lot easier to identify Bears when they come to the same tree over time as apposed to different trees. Aside from their white markings, I rely heavily on Identifying Bears by their height at the same tree.

On a side note, have you noticed Bears urinating while tree rubbing? I see that every so often but most often with the Boars.

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 Post subject: Re: Bear Blazes
PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2020 8:21 am 
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Gary, I have not seen bears urinating when rubbing. Interesting, and why not? I'll have to look more closely. I do have a clip of a sow urinating while walking away from the camera. I kinda guessed Elvira would get your attention.


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 Post subject: Re: Bear Blazes
PostPosted: Mon Aug 03, 2020 10:32 pm 
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cameratrapcodger wrote:
Gary, I have not seen bears urinating when rubbing. Interesting, and why not? I'll have to look more closely. I do have a clip of a sow urinating while walking away from the camera. I kinda guessed Elvira would get your attention.

I have only noticed it with videos but never on stills. I don't see it often which makes me wonder if it's a sub conscious reaction rather than a deliberate conscious reaction. I know that Marten, Cougar and Wolf for example will deliberately urinate at will to scent mark, much like dogs. Whereas it would appear that ungulates urinate when the urge hits them. Unless of course they are urinating on their hind legs during the rut. Which I would think is a deliberate act of scent marking. Bears on the other hand, well I've only ever seen them urinate while rubbing trees. I believe animals that sniff an area or object followed by either rubbing and or rolling on that spot do so for two reasons. To leave a scent or to retrieve a scent. It would be interesting to know why some Bears urinate while rubbing.

I have in the past drizzled some fish oil 6 ft. up a tree trunk. Not just any tree but a tree alongside a game trail and one with no lower branches and preferably upright or leaning into the trail. That gets most every Bear that happens by to stand and rub up against it. Great way to identify individuals based on height, coats, undersides and chest patches. One doze of lure usually lasts all season as it doesn't take long for the scent of others to permeate that tree.

Scent marking is a fascinating behavior that I am constantly learning about or at least trying to understand more of. Keep up the great work Codger, you are an inspiration to many in what you do.

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