Country Creatures - Black Bear
Definitely a Wilderness Animal to be Respected
Growing up in the little community of Bear Lake B.C. with a wide abundance of wildlife around us I figured out quite quickly that black bears can be big and scary.
Wildlife deserves the respect it demands and those of us who move into their territory must appreciate that these creatures have lived here long before we came along. An appreciation for their way of life is the only way our species can combine without one or the other being harmed.
Bear Lake, British Columbia, Canada.
I guess that I am a little partial to black bears because I grew up in a community known for its bear population. When I lived there Bear Lake, B.C. was a tiny logging community set deep in the woods. There were a few people, a lot of snakes and frogs, and one heck of a lot of black bears living there.
It was a pretty isolated area. With wildlife abundantly romping all around us we learned to look at these rugged rural visitors as a natural part of the area that we lived in. We simply planned our lifestyle with them in mind.
Generally as a kid we traveled through the woods in packs but I can recall one time riding my bike to the local beach alone and as luck would have it there were a few black bears waiting to meet me that day.
This is the One Time I Seriously Worried I Might be Going Down
The beach was about 3 miles from home and I decided to take a shortcut through the woods as it would shave off about a half mile of the trip. Problem is that back in those days people started little dump sites on old abandoned roads and I was about to run into a brand new one that a group of local bears were busy chowing down on.
I came zipping around a corner on the old logging road to see 5 startled black bears staring straight at me. You could tell that they had seen or heard me before I had them and they were sizing up my intentions for disturbing their dinner.
Instinctively I dismounted my bike and for what seemed like an eternity I slowly walked it past the now very curious bears. One large black bear never stopped chewing but his eyes also never left me so I kind of knew that I might be in just a wee bit of trouble if I made any sudden movements. With trembling legs I walked my bike till I could no longer see the bears. Then I got back on and peddled like crazy to get out of those woods.
Ha now a days you sure wouldn't let a 10 year old take that kind of trip without parental supervision. Sad thing about this story though is that it's the people now a days who are scarier than the black bears are. How times have changed.
Mom and Cubs are Cute but Don't Get Between Them
They truly are quite an impressive sight but you do have to be careful in how you approach them. How fast can a black bear run? Let's just say that you should not be thinking that you might be able to out run one.
Black bears can run at speeds of up to 55 kilometers (34 miles) per hour. Although these animals may appear big and bulky they really can move pretty darn fast. Which means that you had better be thinking of getting out of their way if you see one coming.
This is especially true of wildlife with little ones. Never get between a baby bear and his mom cause she can be very protective of her cubs.
Female black bear will generally give birth to two or three cubs while in her winter den. The cubs are extremely tiny and weigh only about .225 kilograms (1/2 pound) at birth.
The cubs nurse on the mother till spring when she will wake to lead her youngsters off in their search for food. The black bear cubs will stay with their mother for two years. During this time the female black bear is highly protective of her young charges and can be very dangerous if she feels that they are threatened.
Woodland Creature Images can be Quite Charming
Fortunately merchandise decorated with the image of these creatures is safe to be around. No nips, scratches or bites. Cute woodland bears add a delightfully decorative touch to any corner of the home or office they decide to settle down in.
Wildlife imagery can also be country charming so these are items found in many homes. Art, furniture, blankets, rugs, dinnerware, books, and jewelry, any one of these products can be a wonderfully unique gift choice for any season of the year but don't expect to see a bear fur rug advertised here folks, I'm the type of girl who likes it when the critter gets to keep its fur.
Their image though can be the perfect decor arrangement for a cabin or summer home. Many people enjoy decorating the kitchen in a black bear theme. It's a logical choice. Bears have big bellies to fill and especially just before or after hibernation. A black bear will lose about thirty percent of it's weight while hibernating through the winter. It is therefor natural for a black bear to be very hungry in the spring when it wakes up.
Just relaxing and hanging out around food is something bears are well known to do, especially around salmon spawning areas. So when out in the country keep that information in mind. If your home is in the backwoods put those kitchen snacks away. Keep your trash bear proof and your living area safe. When the worlds of human and bear collide it is generally the bear who suffers so please be responsible.
Respect for our Fellow Creatures is so Very Important
Bear Trivia: What Does the Average Black Bear Weigh?
The average female black bear will generally weigh in at around 70 kilograms (154 pounds) so is much smaller and lighter than the male black bear. The average male will weigh about 135 kilograms ( about 297 pounds) but can get as large as 290 kilograms (639 pounds).
These animals can get pretty darn big and you'll quickly notice that fact if you happen to accidentally startle one. Bears have very big teeth and claws so can be quite a sight to see in the wild. Also as mentioned previously for such a big dude he can run mighty fast so you really do want to take a little extra care when out roaming in their territory.
The Spirit Bear is a Distinct Cub of the Black Bear
British Columbia Canada is known for its large spirit bear population. Also known as the Kermode bear, named after Francis Kermode who was a researcher of this species, the spirit bear is a genetically unique cub of the common black bear.
Although often thought of as an albino bear this is not the case. The spirit bear is a black bear which carries a gene that dictates the signature lighter color fur it will be born with.
Unique to British Columbia Canada this rare bear has faced many dangers due the potential development of its natural habitat. It is largely through the protection of first nations people that this bear continues to exist today. If not for their efforts at keeping the bear and its habitat safe they may not exist today. It is estimated that there are only between 400 and 1000 spirit bears in existence.
Writer, blogger, wife, mother, and grandmom. I love to write and I love to shop, combining these elements just seemed logical so here I am.
There are 8 distinct species of bear with further classification of these animal types within each category.
1. Asian Black
2. Black which also includes Cinnamon and Spirit Bears.
3. Brown which also includes Gobi, Grizzly
4. Polar Bear
5. Panda Bear
6. Sloth Bear
7. Spectacled Bear
8. Sun Bear