Everything you always wanted to know about Alaska and were afraid to ask. Part-2  

ForPlay2000 56M
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3/22/2006 7:39 pm

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3/22/2006 8:01 pm

Everything you always wanted to know about Alaska and were afraid to ask. Part-2

Wild Life

Alaska is well known for its wild life. We have healthy populations of black bear, brown bear, polar bear, elk, bison, sheep, goat, caribou, moose and the list goes on and on. We have migratory birds that visit us from as far away as Antarctica and Africa.

Brown bear verse grizzly: Essentially they are one in the same except the brown bear live more coastal while the grizzly lives inland and has a much more meager diet.

Coastal bears (Brown Bears) on the other hand have access to the spawning streams of salmon and grow larger because of their regionally provided protien rich diet. And, because they aren’t hungry all the time Brown Bears are more predictable.

A Kodiak Brown bear can exceed 1400 pounds and stand 11 feet tall. The same is true for the Polar Bear.

A trophy Moose will weigh between 1300 and 1400 pounds, stand 6-7 feet at the shoulder and have a rack that is over 72 inches wide. In fact it is illegal in Alaska to harvest a bull moose who anlers are less than 50 inches from brow tine to brow tine.

Most have probably heard of Timothy Treadwell by now. He was the self proclaimed bear "biologist" studying bear behavior in Katmai National Park. Long story short, he was eaten by his subjects. Most of the people I know who are active in bush travel, myself included, think he was plain crazy! Only 40 pounds of remains between himself and his girlfriend were recovered.

I've been to Katmai several times, fished Brooks and encountered bears. I didn't approach them or try to mimic bear behavior. I gave them the respect they deserve. I've stood with both feet, in waders, inside the single paw print of a brown bear. What would you do if you encountered a 1400 pound brown bear???

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