William F. Harvey

Estimating Population Size of Maryland's Black Bears Using Hair Snaring and DNA Analysis

Wildlife Outstanding Technical Paper

Black bear (Ursus americanus) populations have expanded in Maryland since the late 1970s. Previous attempts to estimate bear numbers have been hampered by access to private land and manpower shortages. The development of hair snaring techniques, coupled with genetic fingerprinting, provides a more efficient technique than traditional mark-recapture methods to estimate black bear numbers in Western Maryland. In May-June 2000, we established 108 grids throughout occupied bear range in Garrett and western Allegany counties in western Maryland. We established hair traps in each grid for 4 week...