Curious bear takes 400 selfies with wildlife motion capture camera
The City of Boulder Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) team in Colorado reported this week in a Tweet that an adorable bear was eager to strike a pose for wildlife motion capture cameras.
"Recently, a bear discovered a wildlife camera that we use to monitor wildlife across Boulder open space," OSMP Tweeted. "Of the 580 photos captured, about 400 were bear selfies."
Making headlines around the world
The bear incident happened in November of last year but it just made headlines recently. News outlets everywhere seemed to rush to spread the pictures shared by OSMP of the cuddly bear taking all kinds of poses.
“OSMP has 9 cameras across its 46,000-acre land system to help the department learn more about how local wildlife species use the landscape around us while minimizing staff presence in sensitive habitats,” said an August 2022 blog of the organization.
“The motion-detecting cameras provide us a unique opportunity to learn more about how local species use the landscape around us while minimizing our presence in sensitive habitats,” added Will Keeley, senior wildlife ecologist for Open Space and Mountain Parks.
“These cameras play an important role in helping OSMP staff identify important wildlife areas. The information we collect from them is used to recommend habitat-protective measures to help protect sensitive natural areas.”
Recently, a bear discovered a wildlife camera that we use to monitor wildlife across #Boulder open space. Of the 580 photos captured, about 400 were bear selfies.🤣 Read more about we use wildlife cameras to observe sensitive wildlife habitats. https://t.co/1hmLB3MHlU pic.twitter.com/714BELWK6c— Boulder OSMP (@boulderosmp) January 23, 2023
Triggered to take pictures
OSMP wildlife cameras are triggered to take pictures when an animal steps in front of them. The cameras mostly snap still photographs but also have the ability to capture video for 10 to 30 seconds. At night, they function with infrared light not to disturb or influence nocturnal wildlife.
The cameras are carefully placed in locations where animals are likely to travel, such as road underpasses.
“Sometimes we put cameras in locations where we think we’ll encounter enigmatic fauna like American beavers or black bears,” said Christian Nunes, a wildlife ecologist with OSMP.
“We are fortunate to live in an area with a rich diversity of wildlife species, and these cameras help us to learn what animals are really out there, and what they are up to over the course of a day, a week, or even years.”
Although the bear selfies made us all laugh, the cameras posted by OSMP can provide substantial information on the activities of wildlife animals. As such, they are key research tools that can help us better understand and perhaps then protect wildlife.
If you have enjoyed this story, the check out this report of a huge but cuddly bear getting caught on camera stealing a beekeeper's honey.
A new Brazilian study seems to suggest it does, so we asked scientists for their thoughts.