M. R. Pelton

Black Bear Damage to Agricultural Crops in Coastal North Carolina

Damage to agricultural crops by black bears (Ursus americanus) is a widespread problem in coastal North Carolina. We examined extent and duration of damage to 1,802 ha of corn crops using aerial surveys conducted during summer 1993. Additionally, we obtained 1993 crop damage estimates and attitudes towards bears using a mail survey of farm operators on the Neuse-Pamlico peninsula in 1994. Greatest corn damage occurred in middle to late July during early stages of kernel ripeness. Aerial survey results showed that bears damaged approximately 0.6% of the corn crop compared to 1.2% estimated...


Distribution of Black Bears in the Southeastern Coastal Plain

Black bear (Ursus americanus) distribution and habitat quantities were estimated for the Coastal Plain region of the southeastern United States. Bears are imperiled in the southeastern Coastal Plain primarily because of habitat loss. Accordingly, this paper focuses on bear habitat in the region. Resident bear populations are scattered across the Coastal Plain. They occupy an estimated 67,791 km2. The current distribution, a consequence of habitat loss, represents a 93% range reduction from historic levels. The greatest quantity of habitat supporting resident populations occurs in Florida (...


Techniques to Monitor Relative Abundance of Coyotes in East Tennessee

Scent stations, passive hair-snaggers and howl surveys were evaluated as possible survey methods for monitoring relative abundance of coyotes (Canis latrans) in Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP) prior to the reintroduction of red wolves (Canis rufus) from January 1990 to April 1991. Scent station nights (N = 198), passive hair-snaggers (N = 70), and howl surveys (N = 197) produced 1 (0.5%), 0 (0.0%), and 35 (17.8%) coyote responses, respectively. Scent stations and hair-snaggers proved ineffective for monitoring coyotes at current population levels. Howl surveys elicited...


Bottomland Hardwood Forest Management for Black Bears in Louisiana

We studied habitat use by 32 radio-collared black bears (Ursus americanus luteolus) in the Tensas River Basin of Louisiana during April 1988-90. Preliminary data from telemetry and field observations were combined with a literature review to develop bottomland hardwood forest management guidelines for bears on Tensas River National Wildlife Refuge. Logged areas provided feeding, resting, denning, and escape opportunities for bears. Bears used bald cypress (Taxodium distichum), brushpiles, and ground nests for winter dens. Wooded drainages that traversed agricultural expanses were used as...


Response of Eastern Tennessee Raccoon Hunters to Managed Hunting

Raccoon (Procyon lotor) hunters (N = 269) who participated in 3 nights of managed raccoon hunting in eastern Tennessee during 1984 were surveyed by mail questionnaire; 149 (55%) responded. Hunters responded favorably to hunting in assigned areas, limiting hunting party size to 3 persons, and restricting the number of dogs to lIhunter. Ninety-eight percent planned to hunt under the same managed conditions in 1985. Hunters estimated they spent $15 a night to hunt and were willing to pay an additional $5-$10 for a I-day permit to finance raccoon management practices. The majority of the...


Bedding Behavior of Black Bears in Tennessee

Two distinct patterns of bedding behavior of black bears (Ursus americanus) were observed; all summer beds (N =25) were surface depressions which required no preparation and all winter beds (N =9) were elaborately constructed nest-type structures. Seven summer beds were depressions in association with fallen trees, 3 were at the base of large standing trees, and 1 was adjacent to a large rock. Fourteen beds were not in the immediate vicinity of similar structures. Eight summer beds were in game trails. Eight of 9 winter beds were adjacent to obviously selected structures such as large logs...


Reproductive Biology of European Wild Hogs in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Based on 162 European wild hogs (Sus scrota) collected from 1971 to 1973 in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the male: female ratio was 52: 48 and the age composition consisted of 52% of the hogs being <12 months, 21% 12-26 months, and 27% >26 months of age. No sex difference in collection by trapping and shooting occurred (0.1

26 months old were more likely to be shot (75.0%) than trapped (25.0%) (P < 0.005). Males attained puberty in 7 to 12 months and females in 5 - 8 months; both were physiologically capable of breeding year-round. Farrowing activity occurred...


Population Characteristics and Harvest Relationships of a Raccoon Population in East Tennessee

Controlled hunting (9-night season) and livetrapping of raccoons (Procyon lotor) on the Chuck Swan Wildlife Management Area was assessed in relation to total harvest, age and sex characteristics, reproductive parameters, and density estimates. From 1976 to 1978 hunting pressure and hunting success remained relatively constant while the total harvest decreased at an average of 23% annually from 175 (1975) to 80 (1978). Seventy-five, 69 and 69% of the 1976, 1977, and 1978 harvests were juveniles suggesting a greater vulnerability compared to adults; this occurrence also may be related to...


A Survey of Procedures to Determine Relative Abundance of Furbearers in the Southeastern United States

A phone questionnaire was used to determine the extent furbearer population surveys are used in the Southeast, describe the procedures used, identify problems and future directions, and quantitatively rank important considerations in using scent-station techniques based on an opinion survey. Eleven of 16 states conduct annual statewide surveys of furbearer population trends (10 of 11 were scent-station surveys) at an average cost of $26,095. There was no consistency among state surveys and most surveyed biologists (11 of 12) believed consistency was important but questions arose regarding...


Use Of The Pellet Count Technique For Determining Densities Of Deer In The Southern Appalachians

Pellet counts were conducted to estimate population densities of white-tailerl deer (Odocoileus virginianus) on 3 areas in the southern Appalachian Mountains of east Tennessee: (1) the Department of Energy's Oak Rirlge Reservation (2) Chuck Swan Wildlife Management Area, and (3) Carles Cove, Great Smoky Mountains National Park. A different sampling interval was userl on each area: 3 months, 2 month, and 3 weeks, respectively. Density estimates deriverl from pellet counts were comparerl to those deriverl from 2 mark-recapture techniques anrl 1 line transect technique on the Reservation; 1...