Human-Bear Conflicts Expert Team Co-Chair
John has been involved in bear research and management since 1972. He completed his Ph.D. (Population characteristics, denning, and growth patterns of black bears in Idaho) at the University of Montana in 1980. He is a past president of the International Association for Bear Research and Management (IBA) and has also served that organization has a Council member, associate editor, and newsletter editor.
John worked for the Idaho Department of Fish and Game for over 29 years, including 12 years conducting research on black bears. During his years in the field as a research biologist, John designed and conducted research on black bear ecology in six geographic areas of Idaho and was responsible for capturing over 1,500 black bears and collecting information on their population dynamics, food habits, reproductive biology, denning ecology, movements, habitat use, and mortality factors. John has published numerous scientific papers on bear ecology and bear rehabilitation methods, and co-authored, with Jeff Rohlman, a book entitled A Shadow in the Forest – Idaho’s Black Bear that was published by the University of Idaho Press in 1994. He was a co-author for the Cougar Management Guidelines that were published in 2005.
He continues to work as a consultant on efforts to release orphan bears and other species back to the wild and on human-bear conflict issues. In May 2007 he co-chaired an international workshop in Russia on rehabilitation and release of orphan bear cubs. John currently serves the IUCN Bear Specialist Group as the Co-Chair of the Human-Bear Conflict Expert Team.