ACTION A.5 – Availability of carrion from wild ungulates and preparation of plan for supplemental feeding with carrion
Carrion is an important component of bear’s diet. However, feeding of bears with carrion from domestic animals is forbidden since 2004. In addition, substantial part of wild mammal carcasses is being removed from the ecosystem, thus decreasing food availability for bears and other scavengers. People in Slovenia often demand reintroduction of feeding of bears with carrion, because they are convinced that this would effectively decrease bear-human conflicts, especially sheep depredations. Recent studies showed little support for these beliefs. However, additional research (such as this and Action C.7) about effectiveness of feeding bears with carrion is needed in order to provide science-based recommendations for future bear management. In this action we will estimate current availability of natural carrion (carcasses of wild ungulates) for bears and explore possibilities for using natural carrion for bear feeding.
We will estimate spatial and temporal availability of carrion from four most common wild ungulates (roe deer, red deer, wild boar and chamois) that could be used for supplemental feeding of bears in Slovenia. Carrion availability will be assessed for four causes of death: harvest, traffic collisions, predation from wolf and lynx, and other natural causes. Based on these results we will prepare general recommendations for possibilities of supplementary feeding of bears with carrion from wild ungulates. We will also select 20 existing feeding sites inside bear core area (preferably near conflict hot-spots) that are currently supplied with food of plant origin to test efficiency of carrion feeding (see Action C.7). A plan for the experimental supplementary feeding with carrion on these selected feeding sites and for monitoring of its effectiveness will be prepared.
Latest A.5 actions:
We assessed spatial and temporal availability of carrion from red deer, roe deer, wild boar and chamois which is already [...]