Event Aims To Break Down Barriers Over Grizzly Bear Relisting

Mar 1, 2019

Credit NPS Photo / Ken Conger

"Can We Bear the Bias?" is the name of an event trying to break down the barriers of the Greater Yellowstone Grizzly Bear discussion. The event brings grizzly experts from Wyoming, Montana and the federal government to have a frank conversation with the public on the current and future status of the grizzly.

The Western Bear Foundation is one of the hosts of the Bozeman event. Joe Kondelis is the president of the foundation and he said the idea of the event is to provide scientific data in an attempt to be unbiased on the true status of the bear.

"I think quite often both groups want the same thing, anti and pro-delist. They kind of want the bear to be recovered, but we just don't understand how to talk to each other, and maybe reasons for why we want each thing," said Kondelis. "So, this is an event to try to break down those barriers."

Because grizzly bears are such a polarizing species, Kondelis said he hopes this event opens dialogue and answers questions for interested people.

"I think we're going to have a lot of conversation about connectivity. It's going to be a big piece. Hunting will come up, I'm sure, and I think policy on how to manage the growing population," said Kondelis.

The idea came from Right to Roam podcast co-host, Chris Sheets. This event is on Saturday, March 2, in Bozeman.