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1 February 2011 Evaluation of Stored Body Fat in Nuisance-Killed Japanese Black Bears (Ursus Thibetanus Japonicus)
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We evaluated the stored body fat of Japanese black bears (Ursus thibetanus japonicus) killed as nuisances in Gifu and Fukushima prefectures, Japan, during 2005–2007. We employed femur marrow fat (FMF), modified kidney fat index (mKFI), and abdominal subcutaneous fat (ASF) as indices for quantitative evaluation. We examined the basic characteristics of these indices, such as seasonality, age and sex dependency, and the quantitative relationship among them. mKFI and ASF increased towards the beginning of the denning period (December), while FMF was relatively stable throughout the sampling period (July–December). In cubs, all indices showed significantly lower values than in the older age classes. There seemed to be a catabolizing order between FMF and mKFI, but not between mKFI and ASF. We also evaluated the yearly change in the indices, and discussed its relevance to the incidence of bear intrusion into human residential areas. Bears nuisance-killed in summer (July–September) 2006 had a significantly larger amount of stored body fat than those killed in summer 2007, although the number of nuisance kills was larger in 2006 than in 2007. This suggests that poor nutritional condition is not a direct cause of bear intrusion.

© 2011 Zoological Society of Japan
Atsushi Yamanaka, Makoto Asano, Masatsugu Suzuki, Toshio Mizoguchi, Toru Oi, Michito Shimozuru, and Toshio Tsubota "Evaluation of Stored Body Fat in Nuisance-Killed Japanese Black Bears (Ursus Thibetanus Japonicus)," Zoological Science 28(2), (1 February 2011).
Received: 8 June 2010; Accepted: 1 August 2010; Published: 1 February 2011

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