If you care about bears, please take a few minutes!

Your comments are desperately needed if there is to be an active recovery of our native endangered Grizzly Bears to the North Cascades Ecosystem.

Without your comments, all the hard work by so many conservation organizations and so many Federal agencies will unsuccessfully end.  This is tragic for such a magnificent species that is the symbol of pristine wilderness that once was and the loss for future generations.

The opposition comes from the well-funded, well-organized cattle industry that continually opposes any legislation to protect cougar, bear, and wolves in the State of Washington.  They are the greatest contributing factor to the destruction of the grizzly bear in the United States.  In just 200 years we have managed to eliminate 99 percent of their original range, reduce their number from 50,000 to 100,000 to less than 1,200.

We have the opportunity that no other west coast state has to return the grizzly to where they once thrived, where they belong, far and free from human encroachment.

The grizzly bear has a very low reproductive rate and therefore has a slow population growth.  They live most of their lives in remote areas, feeding mostly on vegetation and any dead animals they may find.  By nature, they are shy, easily retreat and cattle depredation is extremely low as well as human/bear conflicts in Montana, Idaho and Wyoming.

Grizzly bears have been an important part of the North Cascades Ecosystem for thousands of years.  They play a vital role for the health of the environment and other wildlife species, figure prominently in regional Native American and First Nations’ cultures, and contribute to the richness of our natural heritage in the Pacific Northwest.

With nearly 10,000 square miles stretching from I-90 north to the Canadian border and anchored by North Cascades National Park, the designated North Cascades Grizzly Bear Recovery Area is one of the largest blocks of wild federal land remaining in the lower 48 states.  Research indicates this wilderness landscape has quality habitat capable of supporting a self-sustaining grizzly bear population  Given the low number of existing grizzly bears, their very slow reproductive rate and other constraints, the North Cascades grizzly bear population is considered the most at-risk grizzly bear population in the United States today.  With so few grizzly bears left in the North Cascades, biologists believe they may soon disappear entirely from the area is recovery actions aren’t taken.

We have included a number of talking points and a website for further information, Conservation Northwest.

Simply pick one or two talking points and visit https://parkplanning.nps.gov/commentForm/cfm?documentID=64266 to submit a comment or mail it to:

Superintendents Office

Grizzly Bear Restoration

North Cascades NPS Complex

810 State Route 20

Sedro Woolley, WA 98284

The current public comments end March 26, 2015.

Do it now!  Just a few sentences are all it takes.

Consider the following talking points to Include in your Comments:

  • I strongly support the recovery of the north Cascades grizzly bear and comment the NPS, USFWS and WDFW for moving forward with the restoration of this important native species.
  • The recovery coordinating agencies should take into full consideration the ecological, biological, cultural, spiritual and economic importance of grizzly bears to the Pacific Northwest.
  • As the only Grizzly Bear Recovery Zone on the west coast (or outside the greater Rocky Mountains) restoring a healthy North Cascades grizzly bear population is important to the resilience of the species in general, particularly in light of climate change.
  • Quality habitat still exists for grizzly bears in the North Cascades Ecosystem.  Thus, we have an ethical and legal obligation to restore a healthy grizzly bear population to the North Cascades.
  • There is strong public support for grizzly bear recovery in the North Cascades that transcends geographic and demographic lines.  Washingtonians support healthy wild ecosystems with all the native species present when habitat and ecological conditions allow.
  • I want to see the best available science used to identify and implement active strategies to restore a viable population of grizzly bears in the North Cascades Grizzly Bear Recovery Zone.  Therefore, the EIS must include alternatives to add a modest number of grizzly bears to the North Cascades Ecosystem under the guidance of local communities a strategy that has been used successfully in Montana’s Cabinet-“Yaak Ecosytem.
  • Grizzly bears are culturally and spiritually significant to First Nations throughout the Pacific Northwest and British Columbia
  • Grizzly bears are considered an “umbrella” species, and they play an important role for healthy ecosystems.
  • Grizzly bears have been part of the Pacific Northwest landscape for thousands of years.  We have an ethical and legal obligation to restore this native species.
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