Father Bear

What does a logger’s daughter do with her Dad on Father’s Day? Naturally, we spent some time in the woods.

Something my Dad is pretty passionate about are his redwoods. His dedication to our family forest is like an urban dad’s manicured lawn. He has taken great care and invested many hours and dollars managing the forest in order to provide ample habitat for wildlife, optimize growing conditions and minimize impacts to streams and soils. Forest management is his passion and livelihood.

Bear damage on redwood trees, one of many sites in our forest.

Like my two sisters and I he has watched his redwoods grow from seedlings.  He is a good father and logger protecting his daughters and his trees. On our drive he showed me something that compromises the redwoods, his investment and his job, dying trees. This death is caused from the California black bear.

The bears remove the bark from trees in strips eat the cambium of trees. The function of cambium in a tree is the growth of the branches, roots and trunk. When a tree is damaged from the bear stripping the bark it becomes more susceptible to other disease and insect damage. The tree looses vigor in growth and often dies. Essentially the bears are damaging their own habitat.

Strips of bark that are characteristic of bear damage.

Senate Bill 1221 threatens the ability to use the hunting of bears with hounds as a management tool for forest health. Reducing the over population of bears can reduce the bears need to seek cambium as a food source. Reducing the competition for food would allow the bears to eat their other sources of food.

Hound hunting is not the only solution to this problem. We are not a bear hating family by any means. Urban development pushes bears into areas that cannot support their higher concentrations.  The damage to the trees reduces the value of the forest. It becomes very difficult for a landowner to afford to effectively manage the resource that allows for the bear habitat in the first place. An integrated approach should be developed to determine what is best for the forest and the bears. This bill is not a step in the right direction.

Senate Bill 1221 is not good for our forests.

Cambium is essential for the secondary growth of tree limbs, roots and trunk.

A good article for more information is, “RECOGNIZING BLACK BEAR DAMAGE TO SECOND GROWTH REDWOODS” by Gregory A. Giusti
from the University of California Cooperative Extension, Del Norte County, Crescent City, California.

Happy Father’s Day Dad!

View Senate Bill 1221 and contact your Assembly Members from the list below if you oppose the bill.

Assembly Member Jared Huffman
Phone: (916) 319-2006
Fax: (916) 319-2106

Assembly Member Bob Blumenfield
Phone: (916) 319-2040
Fax: (916) 319-2140

Assembly Member Nora Campos
Phone: (916) 319-2023
Fax: (916) 319-2123

Assembly Member Paul Fong
Phone: (916) 319-2022
Fax: (916) 319-2122

Assembly Member Mike Gatto
Capitol Building #4140
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (916) 319-2043
Fax: (916) 319-2143

Assembly Member Roger Hernandez
Phone: (916) 319-2057
Fax: (916) 319-2157

Assembly Member Ben Hueso
Phone: (916) 319-2079
Fax: (916) 319-2179

Assembly Member Ricardo Lara
Phone: (916) 319-2050
Fax: (916) 319-2150

Assembly Member Mariko Yamada
Phone: (916) 319-2008
Fax: (916) 319-2108

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