Do Tourons Furnish Extra Work for Park Rangers or Food for Wildlife?
Some people just don’t understand. A bear has really big claws that are not just used to climb trees to get away from fires. Those claws grab fleshy meat things and are used for eating and fighting. Humans are included in the fleshy meat thing group.
Sow bears are extremely protective mothers. Being the biggest land mammal in North America gets them plenty of respect from prey, but humans seem to consider themselves outside of that category. Bears may not see humans as food, but that only leaves one other option. A sow may consider humans as a threat to her cubs. Arguably a worse scenario.
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Do those thoughts even cross some people’s minds? When visiting an area known to have bears, a bit of caution and forethought saves lives. Park rangers do not like paperwork, they would rather be out taking care of wildlife and such. Touron deaths create plenty of paperwork, not to mention cleaning up dead tourons is not on the preferred activity list.
As a public service, let’s encourage all amateur nature photographers to practice their craft from inside their vehicles. Snapping selfies within 15ft of a sow and her 4 cubs may be an invitation to a messy photo shoot. Viewing such carnage may scar younger onlookers, give other visitors nightmares, and cause park rangers to chase down the bears to get back the touron parts that are left.
Please follow the advice posted on signs at entry points to the park, written on guide pamphlets, and announced repeatedly by national park staff. Maintain a distance of 100 yards from bears and wolves. That’s a football field for anyone who can’t measure. Stay 25 yards away from all other animals including bison, elk, and moose. Please don't feed the bears.