A Bear in Them Thar Woods

There are bears scattered around the Coast Range. We hear reports of elk hunters seeing a mamma with twin cubs roaming around  the canyon and peaks just to the north of our farm. The old farmstead two miles from us has an apple orchard up the hill away from the house, out buildings and the road, they report that bears come in and steal the apples as they ripen, breaking branches and leaving scat as their calling cards.

Here on the farm, we have not actually had a sighting, yet.

Several years ago, when Mike was culling sick and slow-growing timber from the stand of trees on the hill, he noticed a tree that had sap dripping from a wound high in the branches. About 50 feet up the tree, where there was a bracket of sturdy limbs for a bear to sit, the bark had been scratched off. The bear had girdled the tree, that is removing the protective bark so the moisture is unable to supply the top of the tree. The water and sap slowly ooze out of the wound and kills the tree from the top down.

Today, Mike noticed another tree that had the same kind of wound. He will fall the tree to clean up the damage. Once the tree is on the ground he will be able to know for certain if our bear friends are back on the farm again or if we have other critters causing tree demise.

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