Grizzly Bears Archive
Alberta’s Eastern Slopes forests between the mountains and the grasslands have ecological importance far greater than their physical area. Healthy forests serve an invaluable role in collecting, storing and filtering water, and slowly releasing it into creeks and rivers. Once, management of these forested lands placed a firm priority on the production of a sustained and healthy water supply. More recently, this management priority has been undermined, and the primary use of forests has become the production of a sustained supply of timber. Native fish populations including endangered bull trout and West Slope cutthroat trout need healthy forests. They need the cold, clear, shady headwater creeks that sensitive forest management provides. We need to return to a model of ecosystem-based forest management that nurtures Alberta’s headwaters. Only then will we have a truly functioning ecosystem that will supply clean water for all Albertans to enjoy.
AWA notes with approval comments made by Alberta Environment and Sustainable Resource Development (AESRD) spokesperson Nikki Booth. In a story carried by the Canadian Press, Booth reaffirms that “right now we aren’t considering any sort of grizzly hunt.” This assertion is consistent with the message previously given by AESRD. It also reaffirms a commitment to the guidelines in their own grizzly Recovery Strategy that lay out the conditions that must exist before any hunt is resumed -- conditions that have not currently been met.
It’s too early to be calling for a reinstatement of the grizzly bear hunt in southern Alberta, says a coalition on groups working toward the population’s recovery. Government policy sets out the conditions under which a resumption of a hunt may be considered. Those conditions do not yet exist.
It is a matter of great concern that reports of increased grizzly sightings in 2012 over previous years, especially on private lands in the southwest corner of the province, have led to calls from area residents for a resumption of the grizzly hunt. While AWA acknowledges that grizzly populations in that corner of the province may be on the rise, we caution that there remains a large gap between this localized increase, and the conditions needed to justify a resumption of the hunt that was suspended for very good reasons.
2013-01-02 AWA Wilderness & Wildlife Defenders: Mt. Norquay Proposal to Break Banff Park Wildlife Assurances
The federal government is seeking public comments until January 4 on a proposed plan to allow summer chair lift operations and tourism into what is now secure grizzly habitat in Banff National Park. We hope you will take a moment to ask decision makers to protect Banff Park wildlife and keep this important summer wildlife habitat secure, as was promised as part of a previous expansion of the ski hill’s footprint.
Wild Lands Advocate article, August 2012, by Courtney Hughes. Hughes is a PhD student at the University of Alberta studying the influence and impacts of the social landscape on grizzly bear conservation in Alberta. Here she explores the nature of the term "Values" and how that word has different meanings to different people. Understanding and accounting for this disparity, she argues, is important for the success of long-term conservation of grizzly bears.
Wild Lands Advocate update, August 2012, by Nigel Douglas. Another study recently published in the Journal of Applied Ecology confirms what we already know: inappropriately high levels of access are one of the primary threats to grizzly longevity. When will the government pay attention to the growing mountain of evidence and do something to reduce access levels to the targets they themselves have set?
Wild Lands Advocate article, August 2012, by Sean Nichols. Nichols continues his series in which he presents AWA's 2012 priorities, this time highlighting Alberta's grizzly bears, and the Cold Lake area along the province's eastern border.
Wild Lands Advocate article, August 2012, by Nigel Douglas. Douglas relates a field trip he made through southwestern Alberta, where the Drywood Yarrow Conservation Partnership is looking at ways to learn to live with grizzlies and other carnivores on the landscape... and seeing positive, tangible benefits.
Report from the Journal of Applied Ecology 2012, by Joseph M. Northrup, Justin Pitt, Tyler B. Muhly, Gordon B. Stenhouse, Marco Musiani and Mark S. Boyce.
The Alberta government’s new report on 2011 grizzly bear recovery reveals a disturbing trend that is harmful to the province’s Threatened grizzlies. Large numbers of bears are being trapped and moved by provincial wildlife staff.
It’s been two years since grizzly bears were listed as Threatened under the Alberta Wildlife Act, and four years since publication of the Province’s Grizzly Bear Recovery Plan, yet if anything, the Alberta to which grizzly bears are waking up in 2012 is worse than the one to which they woke up in 2008.
Wild Lands Advocate article, December 2011, by Cathy Wilson, Madeline Wilson, and Nigel Douglas. Lessons learned from a truly inspirational elementary school class.
Joint news release from WildCanada Conservation Alliance, Castle Crown Wilderness Coalition and AWA. Conservationists today called upon Alberta premier Alison Redford to halt plans for winter logging would disturb, displace or even kill bears denning in the Castle Special Management Area...
This past September, Alberta Wilderness Association, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative (Y2Y), and the Sierra Club urged the Alberta Government to end new road construction in bear habitat until the amount of roads are at or below the amount identified in the provincial Grizzly Bear Recovery Plan.
Wild Lands Advocate; 'Recall of the Wild' article, October 2011, by Nigel Douglas. * Stephen Herrero will be a recipient of AWA's 2011 Wilderness Defenders Award, which will be presented at AWA's Wilderness and Wildlife Defenders Awards, Friday November 19, 2011.
Wild Lands Advocate update, October 2011, by Madeline Wilson
Industrial public motorized access routes in grizzly bear habitat greatly exceed thresholds recommended in the Alberta government's official Grizzly Bear Recovery Plan.
Alberta environmental organizations will be holding a Grizzly Bear News Conference, at 10:00 a.m., Monday September 19 2011. The groups will make a bold new call for major changes in land management in Alberta to restore habitat for the province’s threatened Grizzly Bears. Will any of the province’s aspiring political leaders commit to take action to recover grizzlies?
Motorized access density in southern Alberta’s Ghost Watershed is more than three times that officially recorded by the Alberta government, and more than four times the maximum recommended in the province’s Grizzly Bear Recovery Plan says a new report released August 8.