Do you know what to do when you see a bear?
When you are out of doors enjoying the hunt, remember you are sharing this space with many other creatures!! One of these creatures is the BLACK BEAR!!
You may be curious since we don’t see one every day!
Warning: Bears are wild animals that are dangerous and unpredictable. Do not approach bears or allow them to approach you!
WHAT TO DO IF YOU SEE A BEAR
- Remain watchful.
- Do not approach it
- If your presence causes the bear to change its behavior (stops feeding, changes its travel direction, watches you, etc.) you are TOO close.
- Being too close may promote aggressive behavior from the bear such as running toward you, making loud noises, or swatting the ground. The bear is demanding more space. DON’T RUN but slowly back away, watching the bear.
- Increase the distance between you and the bear
WHAT TO DO IF A BEAR FOLLOWS YOU:
- Change your direction.
- If the bear continues to follow you, stand your ground.
- If the bear gets closer, talk loudly or shout at it.
- Act aggressively to intimidate the bear.
- Act together as a group if you have companions. Make yourselves look as large as possible (for example, move to higher ground).
- Throw non-food objects such as rocks at the bear.
- Use a deterrent such as a stout stick.
- Don’t run and don’t turn away from the bear.
If the bear’s behavior indicates that it is after your food:
- Separate yourself from the food.
- Slowly back away.
If the bear shows no interest in your food and you are physically attacked, the bear may consider you as prey:
- Fight back aggressively with any available object!
- Do not play dead!
- Don’t leave food for the bear; this encourages further problems.
HERE ARE SOME INTERESTING FACTS ON BEAR BEHAVIOR:
- Bears are most active during the early morning and late evening hours in spring and summer.
- Mating usually takes place in July.
- Both female and male bears may have more than one mate during the summer.
- Bears choose a denning site with the coming of cold weather. Dens are usually hollow stumps, tree cavities, or wherever there is shelter.
- Bears do not truly hibernate but enter long periods of sleep. They may leave the den for short periods if disturbed or during brief warming trends.
- One to four cubs are born during the mother’s winter sleep, usually in late January or early February.
- Bears weigh eight ounces at birth.
- Females with newly born cubs usually emerge from their winter dens in late March or early April.
- Commonly born in pairs, the cubs will remain with the mother for about eighteen months.
FACTS AND FIGURES OF BEARS
Speed: bears can run faster than 30 mpH
Weight: Average 110-300 lbs. Large males can reach 400 lb
Height: A little smaller, from 2.5-3 ft at the shoulder. Around 5 ft standing.
BE SAFE AND HAVE FUN!!
As with all trips, be sure to research where you are going and what wildlife is in the area. Preparation and knowledge are the keys to ensuring a safe trip. Keep an eye out for BEAR warnings and always talk to a ranger if you have questions or concerns.