Bears of Alaska National Parks — Grizzlies in Denali National Park and Preserve are a magnificent sight for any visitor. The park has regulated its grizzly bear population since 1988 – one of the longest running studies of grizzly bears in the wild. For 20 years, National Park Service wildlife biologist Patricia Owen has been on task in Denali, running bear monitoring and management studies. Learn about how she helps the park sustain a healthy bear population in a natural environment while promoting safe interactions between bears and people.

Grizzly Bears of Denali National Park

Grizzlies in Katmai National Park / Courtesy NPS Kent Miller

Grizzly Bears are majestic wild creatures. Viewing Grizzlies in Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska, is a highlight for any visitor. Since 1988, Grizzlies there have been studied by wildlife biologists.

Grizzlies are a naturally regulated wildlife population in Denali National Park and Preserve. The park’s bear population has been studied for over twenty years–one of the longest running studies of naturally regulated grizzly bears. The Grizzlies are monitored visually and by observing radio-instrumented (tagged) individuals. Interactions between bears and people are monitored carefully for the safety of both species.

The population trend determined from the calculated vital rates indicates that the Grizzly Bear population is likely to be decreasing slightly.

[ video ] Pat’s Big Bear
[ video ] Grizzlies: Backcountry Incidents
[ video ] Grizzlies: Front Country Interactions
[ video ] Denali’s Grizzly Population
[ video ] Denali’s Rainbow Portal
[ video ] Grizzly Bears and People: Preserving Bear & Visitor Experiences
[ video ] Great Grizzly Questions & Answers
[ video ] {upcoming} Where’s Tripod?

People: Patricia Owen

Visit FrontierScientists’ photo album: Grizzly Bears (on Facebook)

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Grizzlies project

Related: Glacier Bay Bears, Climate Change Watch

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2 Responses to “Grizzlies”

Nita Nettleton on May 26th, 2011 3:51 pm:

In the 20 years of this study or in concurrent studies in the park, are you seeing a change in vegetation as part of climate change? Shrubs at higher elevations, different shrubs in some drainages, new plant species within forage ranges?

Are you seeing any change in length of denning periods or interruptions during denning that may be attributable to climate change?

Thank you.

"Pat Owen" on June 7th, 2011 3:37 pm:

Yes, we are documenting vegetation changes mostly in terms of shrubs at higher elevations, no new plant species yet. No changes in denning length that we can detect so far and no interruptions during denning.
From, Pat Owen

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