Grizzly bears: ecology of pulsed resources
Pulsed resources and the nutritional, movement and conservation ecology of grizzly bears
Alberta & British Columbia
Post-Doctoral Fellow (2013-2014)
Status: Completed, Study ran 2013-2014, completed successfully.

Nikhil is examining the interaction between large-scale fluctuations in buffaloberry (Shepherdia canadensis) fruit production and the nutritional, population, and movement dynamics of grizzly bears in Alberta. Buffaloberries are a critical component of the diet of bears during the late-summer period prior to hibernation, but fruit crops can vary dramatically among years and habitats. Little is known about the environmental variables that regulate buffaloberry fruiting and the effects of intra- and inter-annual variation in fruit production on the health, habitat use and demography of grizzly bears. Nikhil will investigate these spatial-temporal interactions using biochemical and traditional monitoring methods, as well as shrub manipulations and exclosure experiments to examine fruiting dynamics and interspecific competition for berries. He is also interested in how these resource pulse-consumer dynamics may relate to incidences of human-bear conflict.