MNRF Setting Up Black Bear Trap Surveys And What You Need To Know

Sardines are an acquired taste for people…. But not for bears. For them sardines are a gourmet meal. From May 14, 2018 to July 6, 2018, Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) staff will be conducting barbed wire hair trap surveys to update Ontario’s bear population estimates.

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) plans to take advantage of that to update their bear population data for the province – especially in areas where there are concerns about the sustainability of the bear population.

Starting May 14, ministry staff will conduct barbed wire hair trap surveys in several parts of northwestern, northeastern and southern Ontario.  Staff will set up survey stations with sardines to encourage local black bears to follow their noses right to the stations where they’ll have to rub up against some barbed wire as they go for the fish. As they rub against the wire it leaves behind a small hair sample that can be sent for DNA analysis.  That data will help MNRF staff determine the number of bears in areas surrounding the survey line and also which are returning bears and which are “unique” bears.

MNRF staff will be wearing brightly coloured safety vests and there will be signs up and the stations will also be marked. They are asking the public ask who comes upon the survey locations not to touch the station to protect the integrity of the survey data. Educate your neighbours about the survey sites.

For more information, including survey locations, please refer to the following website:

Parts of central Ontario, including Algonquin Provincial Park and the surrounding areas, and the Bruce Peninsula and surrounding area.

Posted in All Stories, News

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