Summary of “‘If it gets me, it gets me’: the town where residents live alongside polar bears”

“If you were to build a town today, you would never put it here,” explains Geoff York of Polar Bears International, a research and advocacy organization whose members, understandably, spend much time in Churchill each year.
“Polar bears are creatures of the sea ice, and they come ashore in the summer here when the sea ice on Hudson Bay melts and then they wait for the ice to return.” That return tends to begin sometime in November; by October, the bears are already stirring, wandering in anticipation toward the bay along a route that takes them past, and sometimes directly through, Churchill.
Polar bears have made Churchill famous, and led to it being dubbed the “Jewel of Manitoba” and one of the top destinations in Canada.
The challenge for Churchill residents is to encourage the bears to head to the tundra without tarrying in town.
Signs around the town remind residents and visitors alike to exercise caution and report bear sightings on the hotline – 675-BEAR. Culvert traps, baited with seal scent, line the perimeter of the community; bears that are caught in them are taken to a holding facility, popularly known as the polar bear jail, where they are held for up to 30 days, before being drugged and helicoptered to a spot safely away from town – or, if late enough in the season, on to the sea ice.
For residents, living with polar bears is an unavoidable fact of life, and one that instils an understandable caution.
“But if you have to go out in an area that’s a bad area or where bears have been spotted, and there’s a line down, I always get resources: set up security fences, for example, and carry shotguns with cracker shells. Ninety per cent of bears won’t bother you at all, but there are some who are hungry or are curious and want to bat you around like a baseball.”
For a community that in the last two years has been buried by snow and cut off from the world, and that even in the best of times must beware of polar bears around the corner, it is just the latest challenge among many.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Word Collector”

The Settlement began with eighty acres that Young Bear’s great-great grandfather, Ma mi nwa ni ke, helped to secure from the governments of Iowa and the United States in 1856.
Though he’s lived the totality of his life on the Settlement, Young Bear did spend a few semesters at Pomona College in southern California during the late ’60s. He landed there after they offered him a $30/month stipend based on a poem he wrote in high school.
Young Bear, freshly sixty-eight years old, is just as much a Baby Boomer as a member of the Meskwaki Tribe.
The notion of identity is paramount in Young Bear’s work.
Many of his poems begin buried as dream fragments, remembered and eventually saddle-stitched together over time, like “The Lone Swimmer of Henry County, Virginia,” and “The Three Brothers, 1999.” Over the last two decades, Young Bear employed a La-Z-Boy recliner as a “Spirit guide.” “I would break that La-Z-Boy down and start thinking about stuff. I could feel it rock two or three inches each way. What the hell is it?” he said.
Through his work, Ray Young Bear is preserving a language and a culture in his mind, and transcribing those sounds and signs into English, his second language.
Later, as we were walking through the casino parking lot to leave, Young Bear pointed out a late ’90s model Ford Ranger and said, “I want something like this. You’ll see why.”
The work ended just before the Settlement started, yellow Caterpillars waiting to trudge west-yet another of Young Bear’s visions that had come in some way true.

The orginal article.

Summary of “That Cute Baby-Bear Video Reveals a Problem With Drones”

The video, they say, was clearly captured by a drone.
“I found it really hard to watch,” says Sophie Gilbert, an ecologist at the University of Idaho who studies, among other things, how drones affect wildlife.
No one knows who shot it, which drone was used, or how close it flew.
“It doesn’t matter how far away it was, because I can tell from the bears’ behavior that it was too close,” says Clayton Lamb of the University of Alberta, who studies grizzly bears in the Canadian Rockies and uses drones to map the area where they live.
Throughout the video, he notes, the mother is constantly looking up at the drone and clearly bothered by its presence.
At some point, the footage zooms in, probably because the drone itself was swooping closer.
“Many people think that drones are silent, like a soaring bird or a paper airplane,” he says, but at close range, they can be very loud.
Professional wildlife filmmakers have also turned to drones, using them to capture shots of frolicking river dolphins in Planet Earth II and Galápagos sea lions hunting yellowfin tuna in Blue Planet II. But documentary crews often include naturalists who are sensitive to the behaviors of their subjects.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Glory of Otis, Fattest of the Fat Bears”

Fat Bear Week began as Fat Bear Tuesday, when Katmai employees printed before-and-after photos of some of the park’s 2,000-plus residents as they bulked up for hibernation.
Being on a peninsula of southern Alaska, the park doesn’t get many visitors-Zion National Park’s visitor count was more than 110 times Katmai’s in 2017-so Fat Bear Week helps the lower 48 really connect with the world’s largest protected population of brown bears.
“In the natural world, they’re probably gonna be among the fattest brown bears,” says Andrew LaValle, a park ranger at Katmai who’s been involved in Fat Bear Week since last year.
It’s where you can watch livestreams of all kinds of animals, but most important, in summer and early fall, you can watch seven different 24/7 streams of brown bears on Katmai’s Brooks River and its aptly named Dumpling Mountain, where many bears go to hibernate.
Fat Bear Week’s most hardcore fans are many of the same people who constantly populate the bear cam’s comment section and keep close tabs on the comings and goings of their favorite bears on Wikipedia-style fan pages.
Is really what Fat Bear Week is all about, because what else are you going to do with a reality show-style bear-watching experience? No other park has a Fat Bear Week, because most other parks don’t have 24/7 video surveillance of a particularly dedicated group of hunters at their favorite meal spot.
At a time when warming winters are keeping some bears up far past denning time and some urban bears stay up all winter eating literal garbage, Katmai’s bears live in rare, blissful ignorance.
One of the most popular videos of Otis on YouTube is titled “Bear 480 Otis slowly eats his fish.” It’s four minutes and 30 seconds of Otis slowly munching on a fish carcass, tearing off its red flesh in ribbons.

The orginal article.

Summary of “How to Teach Your Kid Colors”

When my daughter was very young, we would read the toddler classic Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? In the story, the title character spots a red bird, a yellow duck, a blue horse, a green frog, a purple cat, a white dog, a black sheep and a goldfish.
It’s a lovely book, but now I know it’s probably not a great one for teaching a kid her colors.
We like to use color words “Prenominally,” meaning before nouns.
We’ll often say things like “The red balloon,” instead of using the postnominal construction, “The balloon is red.”
Say “The balloon is red,” for example, and you will have helped to narrow “Red-ness” to being an attribute of the balloon, and not some general property of the world at large.
This helps kids discern what about the balloon makes it red.
In her study, when kids heard the color words postnominally, their learning improved significantly.
The takeaway: Instead of saying “The red balloon,” say “The balloon is red.” Or change up the title of your favorite toddler book: “Brown Bear … oops, I mean bear who is brown.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “Our Search for Meaning and the Dangers of Possession”

In the 2005 film Grizzly Man, documentarian Werner Herzog profiles bear enthusiast Timothy Treadwell, who spent more than a decade living among grizzlies in the Alaskan wilderness of Katmai National Park.
Even watching the trailer, one can see that Treadwell worshipped the bears.
“Hi Mr. Chocolate! He’s been with me for over a decade and he’s been my good friend. Oh! He’s a big bear!” In 2003, Treadwell’s life ended tragically, if predictably, when he and his girlfriend were killed by one of the grizzlies he loved so much.
For him to act like a bear the way he did for me, it was the ultimate of disrespecting the bear and what the bear represents.
A bare-chested Treadwell gets in the water with the bear, and we as viewers feel a bit breathless with awe.
One gets the impression that Treadwell may feel at one with the bear, but the bear certainly doesn’t feel at one with him.
As the bear edges past him, Treadwell reaches out and touches the animal’s fur.
The sense of mission Treadwell felt in relation to the bears gave him a sense of a special destiny.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Did Climate Change Kill a Polar Bear?”

At the bottom of the screen, as the bear struggles to keep its hind legs from collapsing, the words “This is what climate change looks like” appear.
Ikakhik was skeptical of the implicit link between the bear’s condition and climate change.
“Of course, it is in their best interest to say that polar bears are happy and healthy and that climate change is a joke, because otherwise their quota might be reduced.”
The conflict nearly always stems from the ongoing Inuit practice of hunting and eating seals, whales, walrus, and polar bears.
For his part, Nicklen said he was very careful in his initial social media posts not to overstate a link between the bear’s condition and climate change.
His arguments about one specific bear have been cited more broadly by climate change deniers, too.
“There’s tweets going out saying climate change isn’t killing the bears, it’s cancer. Which of course is not true. That’s my biggest regret from this.”
The video’s enormous popularity shows that people care, he said, about polar bears and climate change.

The orginal article.