As a follow up to a recent Letter to the Editor, “Way to go, DFG” from Ann Aylesworth, The Sheet spoke with Mammoth Lakes Wildlife Management Specialist Steve Searles about Aylesworth’s comment that the cubs orphaned by a Sept. 21 traffic accident had possibly died.
After a weekend of monitoring the cubs and attempts to convince the Department of Fish and Game to allow them to be sent to a bear rescue facility in Lake Tahoe, DFG decided the cubs were big enough and old enough to fend for themselves, and released on their own into the wild. Searles objected to this action (or lack thereof), not convinced at all that the cubs would survive.
This week, he told us that he thinks it’s a “dead certainty the cubs were gone within about two weeks of their last assessment,” before being consigned to the woods. “I wish I had better news,” he said, “but since then, I haven’t seen them and I know where to look and how to track them, there hasn’t been a single sighting, and not one call to me, the Police Department or anyone.”
“They didn’t make it through the winter,” Searles said. “They didn’t even make it through one of the warmest falls on record.”