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16 December 2020 Evidence for historical grizzly bear occurrence in the North Cascades, USA
Kristin M. Rine, Anne M. Braaten, Jack G. Oelfke, Jason I. Ransom
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The North Cascades ecosystem of north-central Washington State (USA) and southern British Columbia, Canada, has been identified as 1 of 6 recovery zones for grizzly bears (Ursus arctos) that were at one time distributed across a nearly continuous range of western North America. The current small number of grizzly bears, along with an apparent scarcity of historical observations, obfuscates the extent to which the mountain range and its surrounding lowlands previously supported grizzly bears. We reviewed and synthesized what is currently known about the historical distribution of grizzly bears in and around the North Cascades to better inform possible future restoration actions. Archeological, ethnographic, and incidental evidence confirm the prehistoric and historic presence of grizzly bears in the ecosystem and surrounding lowlands. Successful implementation of grizzly bear restoration and management in the North Cascades is dependent in part on the perception that they are an integral component of the ecosystem's historical benchmark. Education and outreach efforts that focus on the influence of human perceptions and correcting misinformation about the history of bears in the ecosystem and their interactions with humans may improve long-term restoration success in the North Cascades.

Kristin M. Rine, Anne M. Braaten, Jack G. Oelfke, and Jason I. Ransom "Evidence for historical grizzly bear occurrence in the North Cascades, USA," Ursus 2020(31e17), 1-16, (16 December 2020).
Received: 15 February 2019; Accepted: 6 September 2019; Published: 16 December 2020

archaeological evidence
fur trade
grizzly bear
historical evidence
North Cascades Ecosystem
population recovery
traditional ecological knowledge
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