This blog is the story behind the research. At the start of March 2013, I will begin a four year journey to do a PhD looking at grizzly bears and people in the Canadian Rocky Mountain National Parks. This work will focus on some of Canada’s most iconic landscapes – Banff, Jasper, Kootenay, and Yoho National Parks.
The main focus of the research is try and understand how grizzly bears navigate this landscape in the presence of people, specifically hikers. A second research objective is to understand how people feel about recreating in bear country and what kinds of concessions they are willing to make for grizzly bears to have the space they need to survive.
The Alberta landscape is a complex one for a grizzly bear to successfully survive. This research effort will help to increase our understanding of how bears do just that, and identify ways in which we can help them.
This research is being conducted as part of my PhD requirements through Central Queensland University in Australia. While there aren’t grizzly bears in Australia, there is an interest in understanding interactions and management issues between large carnivores and people.
Research is being conducted by Sarah Elmeligi, Canmore resident, lover of grizzly bears, and native Albertan. This is my home, my backyard, and I want to work to make sure grizzly bears persist on this landscape into the future.