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Continued: Anderson: Bears have been Garshelis' business

  • Article by: DENNIS ANDERSON , Star Tribune
  • Last update: July 30, 2013 - 12:28 AM

They’ve also implanted heart-rate monitors in bears to determine how much energy the animals are willing to expend to cross poor habitat — say 2 miles of hayfields — to reach new country.

These and other investigations help Garshelis and Noyce estimate the size of future bear populations, given the state’s various landscape changes, past, present and future.

Helping the two researchers periodically are grad students that Garshelis advises as an unpaid adjunct associate professor at the U.

Garshelis also peer-reviews about 30 scholarly papers submitted for publication each year, and regularly travels worldwide to study … more bears.

“It started in 1989 with a friend from graduate school who was studying tigers in Nepal,” Garshelis said. “He told me about sloth bears and threats to them. That sparked an interest. Now, of the world’s eight bear species, I’ve studied seven.”

And his wife, Judy, who wouldn’t move to Alaska?

“She agreed I could spend three weeks a year of my vacation studying bears elsewhere,” Garshelis said. “I want to help make the world a better place, and undertaking these additional projects allows me to do that.”

 

Dennis Anderson danderson@startribune.com

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