Year of Award


Document Type

Professional Paper - Campus Access Only

Degree Type

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Name

Resource Conservation

Department or School/College

College of Forestry and Conservation

Committee Chair

Christopher Servheen

Commitee Members

Daniel Kemmis, Matthew McKinney


Bitterroot, grizzly, Idaho, reintroduction, stakeholder


University of Montana


Teevin, Colleen, M.S., Fall 2008 Resource Conservation Grizzly Bear Reintroduction: Understanding Stakeholder Interests Regarding the Selway-Bitterroot Ecosystem South of the Salmon River Chairperson: Christopher Servheen I conducted a study in the Bitterroot Ecosystem of central Idaho south of the Salmon River to identify how local stakeholders perceived their interests would be affected by grizzly bear (Ursus horribilis) reintroduction, how the stakeholders received information about grizzly bear management, and how this information can be incorporated into an outreach and education campaign. I conducted 22 qualitative interviews to provide information on the recreational and business interests of local stakeholders. The majority of local stakeholders residing within the Recovery Area south of the Salmon River are very concerned about potential grizzly bear reintroduction, how grizzly bears might affect them in the future, and how both the proposal to reintroduce both grizzly bears and the reintroduction of wolves have already affected: governmental relations, public participation, assumptions about the legality of the introductions, increased public land use regulations, and issues regarding other wildlife. Those stakeholders open to receiving information regarding grizzly bears in the future are interested in learning more about the Bitterroot Grizzly Bear Reintroduction Plan, costs associated with the reintroduction, furthering levels of public participation, and balanced management of the bear and the ecosystem. They are open to receiving information through the newspaper, television, radio and more. In creating an information and educational plan for the proposed Bitterroot grizzly bear reintroduction, special attention should be given to explaining the Bitterroot Grizzly Bear Reintroduction Plan in simplified terms, grizzly bear biology and behavior, possible changes in land use and access, the science used to create the plan, the similarities and differences between grizzly bears and wolves, the cost of plan implementation, possible affects on local game, various degrees of local management, measures taken to ensure ecosystem balance, and the legality of the plan to reintroduce grizzly bears. Information and education material would best be released to the public via web pages and email alerts, and through a multi-page newspaper insert written for the general public. This study suggests that while stakeholders perceive their interests would be affected by grizzly bear reintroduction, most were willing to accept additional information about a reintroduction plan in order to decrease potential human-wildlife conflicts.

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© Copyright 2008 Colleen Elizabeth Teevin