Augmentation of large carnivore populations can be a valuable management and recovery tool, but success of many programs has not been well documented. The Cabinet–Yaak grizzly bear (Ursus arctos) population was located in northwestern Montana and northern Idaho, USA, and was estimated at 30–40 individuals. The Cabinet Mountains portion of this area may be isolated from the remainder of the zone and was the site of a test of grizzly bear population augmentation. Experimental objectives included evaluating site fidelity, reproduction, and long-term survival of the translocated bears. Four subadult females (2–6 yr old) were translocated from southeastern British Columbia, Canada, from 1990 to 1994. Three of 4 transplanted bears remained in the target area for ≥1 year and satisfied the short-term goal for site fidelity. Recent genetic evidence gathered through hair-snagging efforts has determined that at least one of the original transplanted animals has reproduced, thereby providing evidence of success for the long-term goals of survival and reproduction.
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Vol. 71 • No. 4