CONFLICT PREVENTION PROJECT:

Bear Smart Alberton

Expanding bear-aware community practices along a key connectivity area for grizzlies.

Screenshot 2024-02-28 at 4.15.10 PM
Screenshot 2024-02-28 at 4.15.30 PM
Screenshot 2024-02-28 at 4.16.35 PM
Screenshot 2024-02-28 at 4.15.45 PM
Screenshot 2024-02-28 at 4.15.10 PM Screenshot 2024-02-28 at 4.15.30 PM Screenshot 2024-02-28 at 4.16.35 PM Screenshot 2024-02-28 at 4.15.45 PM

Bear Smart Alberton PROJECT BRIEF

Nestled along the Clark Fork River on the northern edge of the Bitterroots as they reach toward the Cabinet-Yaaks, the town of Alberton lies in a crucial connectivity zone for bears and other roaming wildlife. The newly formed Bear Smart Alberton (BSA) group is working to reduce human-bear conflicts, supporting Alberton and surrounding areas in becoming a bear smart community. Vital Ground is proud to partner with BSA to expand their education efforts. In 2023, we helped them purchase supplies to use while hosting informational booths at community events. We also supported their efforts to expand electric fencing around chicken coops and a community orchard, securing attractants that would otherwise tempt bears wandering through the area.

Following the Bear Smart model first adopted in Canada, BSA has been assessing hazards in the community and will complement this work with an implementation plan next year. The group was featured in a student-made documentary at 2023’s International Wildlife Film Festival, which showcases both the challenges and the commitment of the Alberton community to coexist with the wildlife that makes their town so special.

 

Alberton Bear Smart at a glance

  • Securing attractants with electric fencing
  • Preventing conflicts in a crucial connectivity corridor
  • Promoting community-led bear aware education
  • Conducting hazard assessments and reduction plans