Debate on Grizzly Bear Restoration In North Cascades Resumes; 4 Options Presented
Feb 16, 2017 02:06 PM EST
After 40 years of grizzly bears being declared threatened in the Lower 48 states, efforts to restore these species in the North Cascades of Washington resumes. The Federal government is spearheading efforts to bring back the bears in this side of Washington.
Western Wildlife reported that the National Park Service together with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) are spearheading the efforts together with the US Department of Agriculture, US Forest Service, and the Washington State Department of Fish and Wildlife of bringing the grizzly bears back to the Northern Cascades. The said agencies are conducting a study on the potential effect of the move to restore the grizzly bears in the region.
Star Tribune revealed that the Federal government released a draft plan with four options. The plan includes taking no action to the different efforts to capture bears from other locations and bring them to the 9,800 square miles of mostly public lands in and around North Cascades National Park. Three of the options seek to maintain a population of about 200 bears through relocation and breeding. Aside from the number of bruins to be released, the options differ in the time expected to achieve their goal. The time frame ranges from 25 years to as much as 60 to 100 years.
Animal conservation groups have welcomed the plan. This is huge news for the Pacific Northwest and for grizzly bears," said Joe Scott of Conservation Northwest. His group has been battling for the restoration of the grizzly bears for 25 years. Chris Morgan, founder of the Grizzly Bear Outreach Project, was teary eyed when he heard the news. "These animals have always lived in the Northern Cascades and I think they deserve an opportunity to persist and thrive there." Morgan said.
Seattle Times revealed that the Northern Cascades is one of six designated grizzly recovery areas and the only one outside of the Rocky Mountains.