Availability and Use of Foods by Black Bears in Wisconsin
Bertagnoli, Gordon G.
College of Natural Resources, University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point
Payne, Neil F.
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Forty-five summer (May-August) food categories of black bears (Ursus americanus) were identified from analysis of 337 scats. Plants dominated the diet, and grasses and sedges (Graminae and Cyperaceae) were the most important food. Rosaceae was the plant family used most by black bears in this area, and ants (Formicidae) were the most important animal food. Black bears showed seasonal trends in the use of foods. There were differences between foods used in 1978 and 1979. Black bear foods appeared to be readily available throughout most forest communities of the study area, but aspen (Populus spp.), boreal, and wet mesic forests may have been slightly more important as sources of food.