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'Black Bears of N.H.' with Ben Kilham, April 9


Back by popular demand at Tin Mountain Conservation Center



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Acclaimed naturalist and author, Ben Kilham, will present ‘Black Bears of N.H.,’ at the Tin Mountain Conservation Center on April 9 at 7 p.m. (Courtesy Photo). (click for larger version)
April 01, 2010
According to New Hampshire Fish and Game, black bears are found in 10 counties in the state of New Hampshire. Some local residents observe their furry neighbors at their bird feeder in the spring, as uninvited guests for leftovers in their trash, or meet up with them while hiking in the woods. Some longtime residents are still trying to meet their elusive five- to six-foot-tall, 256- to 330-pound adult neighbors. Whether you think of bears as a marvel or a nuisance, with such frequent sightings and unannounced visits you may want to learn more about your black bear neighbors from someone who knows them first hand.

"As we learn more about bear behavior, we better understand bear/ human conflicts," Kilham said. "We begin to learn that it's not a nuisance bear at all. It's the way people are leaving food around and interacting with bears." Kilham reveals that black bears are highly social individuals. They have the ability to plan and communicate through both physical and verbal language.

Ben Kilham attended the University of New Hampshire and earned a degree in wildlife management. In the spring of 1992, Ben found himself parenting a pair of orphaned, emaciated, four-pound bear cubs. The experience eventually led him to parenting over 40 cubs, releasing them back in the wild, and researching and observing the whole life cycle of the black bear. By thinking more from the bear's perspective, Ben has designed workshops that provide wildlife management with the tools to disarm threatening bear behavior without destroying the bear.

Ben Kilham also discovered an organ on the roof of the black bears' mouth, named the "Kilham organ." The organ acts a receptor allowing female bears to teach their young which plants are edible. "The nose is the finder," says Kilham, "but the organ is the identifier."

Kilham has been featured in National Geographic television specials and articles in The New York Times, People Magazine, The Boston Globe, as well as the "Today Show," "Dateline NBC," "CBS Coast to Coast" and "The Late Show with David Letterman" and many others. This is a great program for all ages, so be sure to tell your "neighbors." This program fills up quickly, so to reserve your spot, call TMCC at 447-6991.

TMCC Nature Programs are open to the public and donations of $3 per person and $5 per family are appreciated.

For more information on Tin Mountain Conservation Center, log on to www.tinmountain.org.

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