Much is being said and written about the food-for-bears situation in the Sandias. It’s the central question in the current controversy over diversionary feeding – or not.
The mind-numbing thing is how the question is being addressed by the antagonists – N.M. Department of Game and Fish vs. conservationists – and by the media taking its notes without a clue on where clarity lies.
The agency from Albuquerque sends its expert into the mountains to assess the natural food: “Well, it’s not great but there’s some there; it’ll be a lean year for bears but they’re survivors.”
I went up into the Sandias to see for myself, checking 10 east-side sites. I reported back that while there’s a pretty good crop of Juniper scopulorum berries, the Gambel’s acorns are few and mostly stunted at best. There’s not much assessment disparity between the agency and me.