A remote camera is very useful when trying to monitor the distribution, abundance and behaviour of wildlife in a certain area, without disturbing the normal situation. Unfortunately these cameras, mostly set up as camera-traps, are vulnerable pieces of equipment, not to mention expensive. They are being stolen, and sometimes dismantled by poachers. The cameras are sometimes inspected very carefully by wildlife, and in this process demolished by accident.
But these rare spectacled bears in a Bolivian park act differently. The footage from a series of camera-trap images released by the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) on 22 October shows spectacled bears (Tremarctos ornatus), also known as Andean bears, behaving like angry Hollywood celebrities – at least when it comes to having their picture taken.
The spectacled bears and cubs repeatedly surround and attempt to dismantle the remote camera traps. This behaviour, demonstrating the bears’ curiosity, also provides clues to help WCS scientists better conserve them into the future.
The footage was shot in Apolobamba Integrated Management Natural Area (Área Natural de Manejo Integrado Apolobamba), a protected area in the La Paz Department, Bolivia. It borders Madidi National Park – one of the world’s most biodiverse protected areas.
(Source: WCS news and features, 22.10.2013)