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Old 09-29-2014, 09:43 PM   #41
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The persistent stalking of a GROUP of hikers.
Where did this information come from?
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Old 09-30-2014, 12:29 AM   #42
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[citation needed]
Emphasis is mine...

Darsh Patel, a senior at Rutgers and resident of Edison, had been hiking with four friends at the Apshawa Preserve on Sept. 21 when they realized a black bear was following them and ran in separate directions. Four of them noticed later that Patel was gone. His body was found two hours later bearing bite and claw marks, West Milford Police Chief Tim Storbeck has said. A bear lurking nearby, “acting aggressive,” was shot and killed by a police officer.

- See more at: http://www.northjersey.com/news/hike....gmlrx72W.dpuf
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Old 09-30-2014, 01:42 AM   #44
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I get that this may seem like semantics to some, but there are important differences - big differences - between a bear following/approaching a group of hikers, and a bear "persistently stalking" them.

Given the information we have about this situation from the media, and from what we know about black bear behavior in general, all we can safely say right now is the following: A group of hikers encountered a bear. The bear began following them/approaching them. When they noticed this, they ran. This triggered an aggressive chase response in the bear (which is why running is discouraged) that resulted in a death. The bear then demonstrated resource guarding behavior (very common) around the body. The bear was killed.

Absent additional information, any other conclusions or statements would be pure speculation. And none of the information that has been presented or linked to in this thread - in any way shape of form - supports the idea that this bear was stalking them, hunting them, or had been planning to attack them.

That may turn out to be the case. As rare as it is... it is possible that this was a lone predatory male... but jumping to that conclusion right now, without the evidence to support it, would be irresponsible.
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Old 09-30-2014, 08:27 AM   #45
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I haven't fully followed this story, but has an autopsy been done to confirm it was actually the bear that killed the hiker, and not his companions (which was my first thought)

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Old 09-30-2014, 09:37 AM   #46
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The point of bringing in the NJ attack was to highlight that the OP's wife's response was the correct one in that particular circumstance. A bear is not a cudly, fuzzy pet that needs to be loved and fed, it's a large powerful wild animal that has evolved to eat a variety of foods including live game it can catch particular if it perceives that game as being weak.

Regardless if a NJ bear expert has said that "the indication" is that bear demonstrated predatory behavior, i.e. was hunting the hikers as food, is kind of diversion and clearly strikes a nerve here on this forum.

Kelcey Burguess, a black bear project leader at state Division of Fish and Wildlife, has said that the necropsy would reveal whether the bear had diseases. He said “the indication” was the bear saw Patel as food, perhaps because, he added, “acorns, hickory nuts, black walnuts” throughout the state have been in low supply recently.

Perhaps a bit more education on behalf of those out in the woods would have saved two lives, the hiker and the bear.
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Old 09-30-2014, 11:06 AM   #47
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The point of bringing in the NJ attack was to highlight that the OP's wife's response was the correct one in that particular circumstance. A bear is not a cudly, fuzzy pet that needs to be loved and fed, it's a large powerful wild animal that has evolved to eat a variety of foods including live game it can catch particular if it perceives that game as being weak.

Regardless if a NJ bear expert has said that "the indication" is that bear demonstrated predatory behavior, i.e. was hunting the hikers as food, is kind of diversion and clearly strikes a nerve here on this forum.

Kelcey Burguess, a black bear project leader at state Division of Fish and Wildlife, has said that the necropsy would reveal whether the bear had diseases. He said “the indication” was the bear saw Patel as food, perhaps because, he added, “acorns, hickory nuts, black walnuts” throughout the state have been in low supply recently.

Perhaps a bit more education on behalf of those out in the woods would have saved two lives, the hiker and the bear.
Bingo on that last paragraph.

And yes, "following a group of hikers" (for how long?) is not "Stalking".

And no a bear is not a cute, cuddly creature. Nor is it the Demon or killer from the other extreme.

Remember too that the "facts" of the attack are given by the people who were scared and now angry. So the facts are through their eyes and under the conditions, (Fear, Panic, and anger in the aftermath with guilt possibly too) one cannot ever be sure of the accuracy.

I guess I'm the "bear guy" on the forum, as far respecting them and even enjoying being in their proximity (And not like Tim Treadwell!!) and I'll be the first to say that they CAN be dangerous creatures, especially if you don't know the "rules".I don't villify bears as a species because most are just making a living out there. Every so often you may get a sick or hungry bear who's behavior is predatory rather then defensive. But even then, there is a reason. On the other hand, you have humans who kill others out of jealousy, rage, or in the course of a robbery or for "thrills". I don't think there are bears out there who kill for thrills, but there are many humans. I also don't advise having a bear as a house pet.
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Old 09-30-2014, 11:28 AM   #48
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I'm not sure as to the posters intent of bringing up the New Jersey killing into this thread. From my standpoint it shares absolutely no trait with the original post in this thread. Not to say it isn't interesting and not worthy of its own thread but the only similarity it shared is "it was a bear". My link to the California attack was nearly identical to what happened to Randomscooter's wife but had a different outcome. My point was, different bear different outcome. And I'll go one step further and say same bear same circumstance different outcome. Some people have a hard time accepting that a wild animal will sometimes act wild and unpredictable.
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Old 09-30-2014, 02:14 PM   #49
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I haven't fully followed this story, but has an autopsy been done to confirm it was actually the bear that killed the hiker, and not his companions (which was my first thought)

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Old 09-30-2014, 02:19 PM   #50
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WW - I nominate you for "Cynic of the Month"
You can only second the nomination my wife already made!!
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Old 09-30-2014, 02:41 PM   #51
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I'm not sure as to the posters intent of bringing up the New Jersey killing into this thread. From my standpoint it shares absolutely no trait with the original post in this thread. Not to say it isn't interesting and not worthy of its own thread but the only similarity it shared is "it was a bear". My link to the California attack was nearly identical to what happened to Randomscooter's wife but had a different outcome. My point was, different bear different outcome. And I'll go one step further and say same bear same circumstance different outcome. Some people have a hard time accepting that a wild animal will sometimes act wild and unpredictable.
I would argue the difference in the outcomes was due to a different circumstance. Below I will define circumstances as the set of stimuli and outcome as the animal's response to said stimuli.

Wild animals do not behave in unpredictable ways, they have very strong responses to stimuli. Often we think the stimuli is the same, and see a different response, but the reality is the stimuli (note plural) is truly not the same. If we could detail all the stimuli which triggered the bear's response I bet we would find the response to be extremely predictable. Meaning, the same set of stimuli (not just one or two) would trigger the same response. The problem however is all circumstances (while appearing the same) are actually different. Often the stimuli (even a subset of all stimuli present) we attribute to the generated response is the incorrect (subset) of stimuli which actually triggered the response. We perceive our error as unpredictability or wildness in the animal, but really it is our own ignorance. We should be careful to not fall into the trap of comparing only a single (or few) stimuli and drawing an inaccurate conclusion.

To generalize my ramblings above imagine:

Stimuli A, B, C, D, E

A+B+C yields response X
A+B+E yields response Y.

If we only notice stimuli A and B and the different responses we might conclude (erroneously) the response is unpredictable.

Another similarly faulty generalization could be made in:

A+B+C yields response X
A+B+E yields response X.

Where we (erroneously) conclude that A and B will cause response X.

While it is impossible to determine every single stimuli which generated the response we shouldn't throw up our hands in frustration. The purpose of science is to collect and catalog as much as possible to get closer to knowing the response. Acknowledging of error does not mean unpredictable, it only acknowledges the limits in our present knowledge base. The more we learn, the better our prediction. The limit approaches 1.
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Old 09-30-2014, 04:36 PM   #52
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I would argue the difference in the outcomes was due to a different circumstance. Below I will define circumstances as the set of stimuli and outcome as the animal's response to said stimuli.

Wild animals do not behave in unpredictable ways, they have very strong responses to stimuli. Often we think the stimuli is the same, and see a different response, but the reality is the stimuli (note plural) is truly not the same. If we could detail all the stimuli which triggered the bear's response I bet we would find the response to be extremely predictable. Meaning, the same set of stimuli (not just one or two) would trigger the same response. The problem however is all circumstances (while appearing the same) are actually different. Often the stimuli (even a subset of all stimuli present) we attribute to the generated response is the incorrect (subset) of stimuli which actually triggered the response. We perceive our error as unpredictability or wildness in the animal, but really it is our own ignorance. We should be careful to not fall into the trap of comparing only a single (or few) stimuli and drawing an inaccurate conclusion.

To generalize my ramblings above imagine:

Stimuli A, B, C, D, E

A+B+C yields response X
A+B+E yields response Y.

If we only notice stimuli A and B and the different responses we might conclude (erroneously) the response is unpredictable.

Another similarly faulty generalization could be made in:

A+B+C yields response X
A+B+E yields response X.

Where we (erroneously) conclude that A and B will cause response X.

While it is impossible to determine every single stimuli which generated the response we shouldn't throw up our hands in frustration. The purpose of science is to collect and catalog as much as possible to get closer to knowing the response. Acknowledging of error does not mean unpredictable, it only acknowledges the limits in our present knowledge base. The more we learn, the better our prediction. The limit approaches 1.
If you mean that if Randomscooter's wife had turned at an slightly different angle or shifted a leg at a different time provoking a different response from the bear than I agree. I think she was lucky and it was a very good idea to get Spray. In all likelihood it will never happen again but its better to be safe than sorry.
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Old 10-01-2014, 10:26 AM   #53
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That isn't what I meant.
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Old 10-08-2014, 05:19 AM   #54
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OK, the test results are in for that New Jersey Bear that killed the hiker.

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/201...ing_shows.html

The bear was a healthy male that did not have rabies. Furthermore the hikers were shown not to have provoked the bear. So my conclusion still stands: a predatory bear.

Very rare and shocking in the East but stuff happens.
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Old 10-08-2014, 07:40 AM   #55
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OK, the test results are in for that New Jersey Bear that killed the hiker.

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/201...ing_shows.html

The bear was a healthy male that did not have rabies. Furthermore the hikers were shown not to have provoked the bear. So my conclusion still stands: a predatory bear.

Very rare and shocking in the East but stuff happens.
I'm curious how the necropsy showed that the hikers didn't provoke the bear? Or are they relying on the word of these kids? "No sir, we didn't provoke the bear that killed our friend" ??

I'm still skeptical....
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Old 10-08-2014, 07:52 AM   #56
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I'm curious how the necropsy showed that the hikers didn't provoke the bear? Or are they relying on the word of these kids? "No sir, we didn't provoke the bear that killed our friend" ??

I'm still skeptical....
It didn't. I'm relying on the Police report that came out a few days ago.

http://www.northjersey.com/news/hike...-say-1.1098729
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Old 10-08-2014, 11:33 AM   #57
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I live about 10 minutes from where this whole thing went down. The one part of the report that everybody down here is still shooting holes in is the police chief's remark about the hikers not provoking the bear. He has made no attempt to justify this statement with any kind of evidence...

for my own two cents, he doesn't need to. Its a tragedy all around. Two young, healthy lives lost in the end and it looks like the forest is gonna keep her secrets on this one.
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Old 10-09-2014, 04:03 PM   #58
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OK, the test results are in for that New Jersey Bear that killed the hiker.

http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/201...ing_shows.html

The bear was a healthy male that did not have rabies. Furthermore the hikers were shown not to have provoked the bear. So my conclusion still stands: a predatory bear.

Very rare and shocking in the East but stuff happens.
But you have only the hikers word that they did not provoke the bear. Also they reported that the bear "stalked" them when in fact it may have just been walking down the same trail they were. I also think the report said that ran? in which case they set off a bear instinct.

So, I think there is no evidence nor any facts to support your conclusion. Instead, your conclusion seems to be based on a point you have tried to make in other threads rather than based on any facts.

Whatever the case, one FACT is that this tragedy to the bear (and the hikers) might have been avoided if:

a: They had educated themselves in the cause and prevention of bear attacks.
b: They had been carrying bear spray.
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Old 10-10-2014, 08:34 AM   #59
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But you have only the hikers word that they did not provoke the bear. Also they reported that the bear "stalked" them when in fact it may have just been walking down the same trail they were. I also think the report said that ran? in which case they set off a bear instinct.

So, I think there is no evidence nor any facts to support your conclusion. Instead, your conclusion seems to be based on a point you have tried to make in other threads rather than based on any facts.

Whatever the case, one FACT is that this tragedy to the bear (and the hikers) might have been avoided if:

a: They had educated themselves in the cause and prevention of bear attacks.
b: They had been carrying bear spray.
With all due respect Redhawk I'll defer to what the experts on the scene observed and concluded. The bear was put down for a reason.

I find it interesting that you emphasize a bears natural instinct to chase prey and yet ignore its natural instinct to stalk/hunt prey by inferring that the bear could have been simply "curious".

Three questions:

1. Under what circumstance would you conclude the fault lies with the wild animal?

2. How would you have responded in this instance WITHOUT bear spray or weapon? I'm particularly interested in what you would have done when clapping/yelling/arm waving failed to discourage the bear.

3. If you were in the search party would you have let this bear go?

I'm heading out the door to the Adirondacks to hunt bear. I'll answer any questions you have when I get back. Hopefully with a dead bear.
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Old 10-10-2014, 08:37 AM   #60
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I have seen more bears in the Adirondacks this year and last year than I have previously seen in total the last 35 years. In person and on trial cam. For example, 2 weeks ago one came up behind my tree stand while I was bow hunting. I could hear something behind me when I stood up to get water out of my back pack and it ran just as I saw it. Last week I checked the trail cam pictures under the same tree stand and I had several pictures over a coupe of days. About a 300 pounder. Last year, among other sightings, I had one huff at me as I was bush wacking in thick brush in a bog area. I just caught a look at it as I left the area. I wonder if some bears are getting used to people in the Adirondacks. There is a lot of construction and logging, relatively speaking, in the ADK the last decade. I wonder if bears wait a bit longer to flee when coming across people due to the fact that they are getting used to the sight and smell of humans. I have not seen more Bear signs lately (like prints, claw marks, etc..) just more visual sightings. Which makes me believe there are not more bears just more sightings. Sadly, in the future, I think one might come too close when I'm hunting. Then we all know what will happen then - dead bear. I hope the Adirondacks stay wild and don't become the Poconos.
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