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Effects of recreation activities on a brown bear family group in Spain

AuthorsNaves, Javier ; Delibes, M. ; Fernández-Gil, Alberto
Issue Date2000
PublisherInternational Association for Bear Research and Management
CitationUrsus 12: 135- 140 (2000)
AbstractActivity patterns, movements, and habitat use of a family group of brown bears (Ursus arctos), radiotracked during 5 months, were significantly different on holidays than on workdays in Somiedo Natural Park, Asturias, Spain. Straight-line distances between daily consecutive radiolocations during holidays (0.74 km, SD = 1.1, n = 86) were twice those of workdays (0.38 km, SD = 0.31, n = 67). Further, 43 visual observations (summing to 1,943 minutes) of the family group showed greater investment in activities such as travel, fleeing, and vigilance on holidays (55% vs. 39% on workdays). Habitats used during holidays differed, as demonstrated by a significant increase of rocky outcrops (26%, SD = 23, workdays; and 38%, SD = 25, holidays) and higher distances to unpaved roads (0.35 km, SD = 0.21, workdays; 0.45 km, SD = 0.22, holidays). Although our sample size was limited to an adult female with cubs in the western Cantabrian Range in a population of only 50-65 bears, the results show that she seemed to avoid human presence and may have fostered similar behavior in her cubs.
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