Category Archives: black bear
In Paula and Troy Scott’s latest trail camera experiment, they positioned an infrared video camera at the intersection of a couple of trails in Plummer’s Hollow and stationed a deer-shaped archery target as a decoy for whatever might come along. I think they were hoping for footage of bucks attempting to spar with it, but instead they got three, 30-second videos of a young black bear having his way with it.
Black bears often attack things that people leave behind in the woods, such as hunters’ blinds and large pieces of trash.
A mother bear with two cubs on Laurel Ridge, along Guest House Trail, around 10:30 this morning. (Read all about it at Via Negativa.)
Last year around this time, I got a shakey video of a big male that Mom and I ran into on Dogwood Knoll when we were doing our IBA point count, so I called it Bird Count Bear. (What are the chances it’s the father of this morning’s cubs?) Here’s that video:
Finally, back in April 2008, I got a video from my porch of a mother with yearling cubs crossing the road. I didn’t have a video camera at the time; this was shot with the video setting on my regular camera, so the quality isn’t great. Note the cinnamon color of the one cub.
I’m going to try to do a better job of posting wildlife (and possibly other) videos shot on the property. I’ve created a Videos category and added the link to the menu in the header.
Starting late last summer, some of the hunters on the property have been using game cams to better track deer and other wildlife. Game cams are motion-triggered, sturdy, outdoor cameras increasingly popular among outdoors enthusiasts, and sometimes scientists, too. Troy and Paula Scott, Jeff Scott, and Troy Scott Jr. have all been involved in this project, but Paula has been the most persistent. A few days ago, her efforts were rewarded in a big way when a game cam she positioned near a bobcat scat and baited with venison caught a full-grown bobcat in the act at 7:36 AM, 1/21/10.
Another hunter had already seen a bobcat from his tree stand during deer season in December, and we’d seen other sign of it, as mentioned, so this wasn’t a huge surprise, just really nice to document. Another game cam capture from January 18 was a little more surprising because it showed that at least one gray fox is still resident on the mountain. After a rabies epidemic swept through two summers ago, we had our doubts.
We don’t permit any predator hunting or trapping on the property, so the game cams offer a neat way for the hunters to pursue this kind of quarry without harming it — and help document wildlife populations in the process. We’re grateful to Paula and the others for taking the initiative. It also seemed as if they were especially persistent in their deer hunting this year in part because they had a pretty good idea from the cameras of how many bucks and does were present — important knowledge on a year when deer numbers were down generally.
One game cam snapped some cute photos of a black bear cub back on September 15. Here’s the best of them: