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Tracking Maine's Black Bears

Tracking Maine’s Black Bears
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Last winter I went deep into the Maine wilderness with wildlife biologist Randy Cross and his crew of technicians in the state’s black bear monitoring program.  Their task: tracking Maine’s black bear population. A total of 23,000 bears is the current conservation objective.

In my 23 years of professional photography, I’d never seen a sleeping mother bear in a den with her cubs. As I was shooting, I prayed that mama bear wouldn’t wake up suddenly to find my lens about a foot from her face — I was certain she’d quickly become a most uncooperative subject.

Later, a nine-week-old cub looked me in the eye, sauntered over, and proceeded to climb up my leg. I picked him up by the scruff of his neck. We were eye to eye — an amazingly intimate connection with a wild animal. At times, I had to discipline myself to keep shooting and not stop and play with the little bears.

Tracking Maine’s black bears began decades ago. Read Mel Allen’s account from 1978.

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5 Responses to Tracking Maine’s Black Bears

  1. Evelyn Scott January 28, 2008 at 1:20 pm #

    I’d like to go on the next trip! How cute are those babies.

  2. Joan Boutelle February 5, 2008 at 9:07 am #

    Very interesting article and wonderful photos. Those babies sure are cute!!
    We were visited by an adult bear and a “big kid” bear in our backyard in Asheville, NC.
    We round out they sure do like grapes…right off the vine!!

  3. Dan Wright February 9, 2008 at 3:20 pm #

    All I can say is WOW! What an experience. Can I follow Lyn on your next trip. I’ll even bring the hand warmers. Great shooting. Tell us what equipment you used to shoot your best shots.
    danwright7@mac.com

  4. Eric Miner February 10, 2008 at 11:04 am #

    “ManHolding3Bears” must give new meaning for giving “Bear Hugs”
    I can Bear-ly contain my humor- sorry.

    Seriously, I find this a beutiful way of connecting (and that was no pun) with the wild. EMiner50@aol.com

  5. Cynthia LaRochelle February 28, 2012 at 10:18 am #

    Wonderful pics. I love that cabin looks warm and cozy. Wow, the claws on those babies are really something. No wonder they are able to tear open a tree trunk looking for grubs and such. I love seeing your expeditions.

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