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Kier Selinsky
(Kieran) - F

Locale: Seattle, WA
Anecdotal info on bear canisters on 08/17/2009 08:20:59 MDT Print View

Hi All,
I thought I'd pass this along as an interesting piece of info. I get feeds from the Cleveland Zoo on Facebook and one day saw this image on their feed:"Warren" the Grizzly bear contending with a bear canister.

They give the animals different toys to play with so as to keep their minds occupied. I asked how long it took the bear to get into the canister, and here was their response:

"Warren was unable to break through the plastic by "standing" on it. Biting through it took him several minutes -- it wasn't easy. He put several large holes in the container once he determined the right "bite angle." (Two years ago, we watched Warren figure out how to bite a coconut in half in a matter of seconds.)"

So it made me wonder - is this one smarter than average bear? Or are bear canisters ineffective against Grizzlies?

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Anecdotal info on bear canisters on 08/17/2009 08:33:47 MDT Print View

Approved canister diameters and wall angles are designed to defeat grizzlies, and they do.

But a canister that is "black bear" resistant is not necessarily "griz resistant".

An early black bear prototype meets its demise from a griz -
Canister Damage

Kier Selinsky
(Kieran) - F

Locale: Seattle, WA
It's grizzly canister on 08/17/2009 08:47:49 MDT Print View

But that's what I thought was interesting, because it appears that it is this canister:
http://www.counterassault.com/html/bearkeg.html

which *is* meant for grizzly protection.

Lori Pontious
(lori999) - M

Locale: Central Valley
bear resistant on 08/17/2009 09:00:40 MDT Print View

I don't think that canisters are bear proof - resistant, maybe. Given enough time a black can figure them out, and in a couple of areas (Marcy Dam, Rae Lakes) they have. Which is why we got very little sleep on the JMT - kept getting up to drive away the bears when we heard them moving the rocks we put on the canisters. No sense in contributing to the pool of knowledge shared by the bears in Yosemite.

Edited by lori999 on 08/17/2009 09:01:46 MDT.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: It's grizzly canister on 08/17/2009 09:09:19 MDT Print View

Kier,
Hummm...
Yep, still on the Interagency Grizzly Bear Committee list.
Old model?
Or like you suggest, one very well trained bear.

Kier Selinsky
(Kieran) - F

Locale: Seattle, WA
Re: Re: It's grizzly canister on 08/17/2009 09:20:55 MDT Print View

I wrote a follow up to the Zoo asking their opinion. My hope is that since Warren gets to play with lots of man-made objects, they consider him to be more "in tune" with figuring out man-made objects than your average bear, and that is why he got into it so quickly. Otherwise, 3 lbs is a pretty heavy chew toy for a bear :)

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: It's grizzly canister on 08/17/2009 09:25:10 MDT Print View

Kier,
Thanks for taking the initiative.
I look forward to reading the reply.

Kier Selinsky
(Kieran) - F

Locale: Seattle, WA
Re: Re: It's grizzly canister on 08/18/2009 18:32:28 MDT Print View

I still haven't gotten a message back from the Zoo's bear expert, but they just recently posted this video on YouTube. Check it at about 1:45 in to see the Grizzly working his magic:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BE2j5-PjV1o

The "large holes" aren't as concerning as I thought they were describing. However, they are large enough that I'm sure the food smell would get on you and your gear, and attract the next night's visitor to you.