Ecology, Environment and Conservation Paper

Vol 26, Aug Suppl. Issue, 2020; Page No.(295-301)

DIET AND FEEDING HABIT OF ASIATIC BLACK BEAR (URSUS THIBETANUS) IN NANDA DEVI BIOSPHERE RESERVE,UTTARAKHAND, INDIA

Vijay Kumar Yadav, D.S. Chauhan and P.C. Lakhera

Abstract

We assessed Asiatic black bear (Ursus thibetanus) feeding habit in Nanda Devi Biosphere Reserve (NDBR), Uttarakhand, India, based on sign survey and scat analysis from September 2016 to August 2018. The eight trails were selected, ranged from 1 km to 5 km and covered altogether 71 km ground efforts for collection of black bear feeding signs in forest, based on accessibility, habitat type and geographic representation. A total of 38 scats were collected from the study area, from these, 20 scats were systematically collected from black bear forest habitats and 18 scats were opportunistically collected from agricultural crop fields and villages surroundings. The largest percentage of scats (42%, n = 16) was identified as very fresh ( 7 days) to a minimum (10.53%, n = 4) in the very old category (> 3 months). In terms of land use, 18 (47.37%), 2 (5.26%) and 18 (47.37%) scats were found in mixed broad-leaved forests, mixed coniferous forest and agricultural land respectively. Most of the mark on trees were observed in mixed broadleaved forests (66.20%, n = 47), followed by mixed coniferous forests (33.80%, n = 24). Feeding signs were primarily found on Himalayan gooseberry (15.79%). Black bears have a major role in the maintenance of healthy ecosystems as they are seed dispersers and predators, so their conservation may helps in conserving habitats for many other important species of mountainous regions.

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