Resolutions from the 6th meeting of the PBSG in Morges, Switzerland 1976

Res#1-1976: Fridtjof Nansen Drift Station

The IUCN Polar Bear Specialist Group,

Considering that the Norsk Polarinstitutt has submitted a polar bear research proposal for the planned "Fridtjof Nansen Drift Station" and that the University of Montana has requested and received funds from the National Science Foundation for polar bear research on the planned Nansen expedition, and that all five nations of the IUCN Polar Bear Group have recognized the need for polar bear research,

Hereby recommends that the organizers of the proposed expedition should consider revising their research plan for the Drift Station to include vertebrate research in general, and polar bear research referred to herein as attached, in particular.

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Res#2-1976: Climatic and human impact

The IUCN Polar Bear Specialist Group,

Recognizing that the impacts of man are ever-increasing, and are particularly serious in northern regions; and,

Recognizing that some climatologists and glaciologists are predicting significant fluctuations in the climate during the coming decades which could alter present distribution and numbers of northern species;

Hereby request the IUCN to draw to the attention of appropriate management agencies the possibility of adverse effects on various species, especially in the Arctic, whenever detrimental climatic changes coincide with harmful impacts of man and,

Therefore requests the IUCN to draw to the attention of appropriate management agencies the need to take into full account the accumulated impact of those changes when considering northern conservation programmes.

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Res#3-1976: Research priorities

The IUCN Polar Bear Specialist Group,

Recognizing the importance of fulfilling the provisions and intent of Article VII of the Agreement on the Conservation of Polar Bears; and,

Recognizing that critical gaps in information presently existing must be filled by the nations signatory to the Convention in order that international and national programmes for polar bear management can be soundly based and implemented; and,

Recognizing that urgent need for continuing assessment of present management practices, including the effects of moratoriums, on populations of polar bears;

Urges signatory countries to intensify their research programmes as a high priority and more particularly:

  1. population estimates, distribution and population dynamics of polar bears in the Svalbard area;
  2. intensified studies of the discreteness and movements of polar bears in the Barents Sea;
  3. studies of the origin, numbers, movements, and ultimate destination of polar bears which possibly cross the Eurasian Basin towards Southeast Greenland;
  4. distribution and ecology of polar bears in the summer in the area north of Alaska;
  5. pay special attention to the improvement of existing and developing new methods of marking polar bears;
  6. put emphasis on increasing cooperative laboratory studies, with emphasis on research techniques.

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Res#4-1976: The Sasquatch

The IUCN Polar Bear Specialist Group,

Recognizing that the development and implementation of effective conservation measures for rare species, distributed at low densities over extensive areas, is more effectively undertaken by coordinated international efforts than by those of single nations; and,

Recognizing that the IUCN was constituted to serve such conservation needs; and,

Recognizing that such an internationally coordinated programme was most successful in the case of the polar bear; and,

Recognizing that there is an equally important species, the biology of which is almost totally unknown, but which is distributed over an apparently equally large range at unknown densities and which is variously known as "Sasquatch", "Bigfoot", "Yeti" and "Tchoo-Tchoona";

Hereby resolves that a Sasquatch Specialist Group be constituted under the auspices of the Species Survival Commission of IUCN with the objective of initiating and coordinating national and international research and conservation programmes for the Sasquatch and its subspecific relatives; and,

Further recommends that Dr. R.E. Schweinburg of the Northwest Territories Fish and Wildlife Service be invited to form, organize, and lead this new but extremely important Specialist Group.

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