Cooperative Research Units
Education, Research And Technical Assistance For Managing Our Natural Resources
Home | Intranet | Digital Measures | Help

Novel approaches to big problems: Integrating citizen science to monitor and estimate black bear populations in New York

Duration

April 2014 - March 2020

Narrative

Black bears (Ursus americanus) are an important game species in New York State. In the last two decades, the bear population in the state has been growing due to conservative bear management and increasing anthropogenic resources. Successful management of the population requires estimating population and home range sizes, and understanding patterns of resources selection and population density in relation to landcover. New York covers approximately 141,000 km2, and so, to collect spatially representative data for such a large region, we must consider approaches to sampling that supplement intensive, traditional capture-recapture and occupancy methods. Such an addition could utilize citizen science, which engages a disperse but wide-ranging network of the public in the scientific research process, often through assistance with data collection. Citizen science has a long and successful history in monitoring natural systems over large spatial and temporal ranges, and recent advances in technology and computation have made the large quantity and variable quality of citizen science data more tractable. We describe a conceptual framework for joining non-invasive citizen science efforts with telemetry, spatial capture recapture, and occupancy methods into a single integrated population model for managing black bears. This integrated approach would be valuable for identifying patterns of black bear distribution, resource selections and movement across a range of spatial scales, for gaining a more mechanistic understanding of black bear population dynamics, and for helping to develop a comprehensive management plan for black bears in New York.

Research Products and Activities

Peer Reviewed Publications

  • Sun, C.C., A.K. Fuller, M.P. Hare, and J. Hurst. 2017. Evaluating population expansion of a black bear population using noninvasive, genetic spatial capture-recapture. Journal of Wildlife Management 81: 814–823. doi:10.1002/jwmg.21248

Thesis

  • C. Sun. Estimating black bear population density in the southern black bear range of New York with a non-invasive, genetic, spatial capture-recapture study.Download  | 

Presentations

  • Sun, C. S., A. K. Fuller, and J. Andrew Royle. Joint estimation of black bear resource selection and population density. 22nd International Conference on Bear Research and Management, Provo, UT. 19 September, 2013.
  • Sun, C. C., A. K. Fuller, J. A. Royle, and M. Hare. Joint estimation of black bear resource selection and population density. The Wildlife Society Annual Conference, Milwaukee, WI. 7 October, 2013.
  • Sun, C. S., A. K. Fuller, and J.A. Royle. Novel approaches to big problems: Integrating citizen science to monitor and estimate black bear populations in New York. 71st Annual Northeast Fish and Wildlife Conference. 20 April, 2015.
  • See All ...
 

Current Staff

Federal Staff: 102

Masters Students: 247

Phd Students: 163

Post Docs: 55

University Staff: 266

5 Year Summary

Students graduated: 722

Scientific Publications: 1960

Presentations: 4355

 

Personnel

Funding Agencies

  • New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

Links

Cooperative Research Units Program Headquarters Cooperators