” The ideal thing human being can execute for bears is replace misconceptions through facts.” – Dr. Lynn Rogers

Bears have fascinated humans for millennia. As one of the many adaptable and also versatile mammals top top earth, their behaviour stirs fear, awe, wonder, and also curiosity in us. Unfortunately, there room still countless myths bordering the lives and also behaviour of bears the negatively impact our relationships v them.

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Stories of ferocious attacks by blood-thirsty bear on defenceless hikers make good lead story in the media. The overwhelming sense conveyed in these story is that bears space dangerous, typical creatures that are severe threat to civilization in any kind of circumstance. This, of course, is inaccurate in ~ best and unhelpful at worst.

Another commonly held myth is the bears room cuddly creatures that resemble the teddy bears we owned as kids. While there is no doubt the bears have actually the strength to trigger children’s imaginations, that is necessary that the stories we share through our youngsters be based on facts rather than fantasy.

It is crucial to dispel both myths – the one based upon fear, and also the other based on a misplaced id that bears room tame cuddly animals.

Bears are intelligent and resourceful wild mammals that deserve our respect. A higher knowledge the the behaviour, ecology and also habitat requirements of bears is crucial if we room to find out to co-exist peacefully with these splendid creatures.


Myth #1: Bears are unpredictable

Fact: Bears usage body language and also vocalizations to display their intentions. Learning around bear behaviour deserve to be helpful to world who live or recreate in be afflicted with country.

Myth #2: bear can’t run down hill

Fact: Bears can run much more than 60 kilometers one hour, and they have the right to do it increase hills, under hills or follow me a slope. To put that in perspective, that’s 15 m/sec or 50 ft/sec – an ext than twice as rapid as we can run. In fact, a bear deserve to outrun a racehorse over brief distances yet has little endurance.

Myth #3: A be afflicted with standing ~ above its hind foot is about to charge

Fact: Actually, a bear standing top top its hind legs is just trying to far better identify what has caught its attention. As I’m certain you’ll agree, it’s much easier to see, hear and also smell things from a stand position, than down on all fours.

Myth #4: as soon as a bear has tasted person food, he won’t eat wild food any type of more

Fact: Bears favor natural, wild food unless it is difficult to find and also human food is too easy to get. Even bears that consistently eat human being food/waste

still eat natural foodstuffs whenever they’re plentiful. Problems usually rise when natural foods run out – a an excellent time to be more vigilant of bear attractants on your property; such as bird feed, pets food, fruit trees/berry bushes, barbecue grease and also compost. Click right here to learn an ext about how to become Bear Smart.

Myth #5: be afflicted with bells room the best way to stop a surprise encounter

Fact: It’s finest to alert bear of your presence by talking loudly, to sing songs or breaking sticks. Shot to hike in a group, on established trails, during daylight hours. Check out our Play section for an ext information.


Myth #6: If a bear charges you, climb a tree.

Fact: in spite of all their timidness ~ above the ground, black bears seem come feel much more courageous in trees. Bears occasionally kill each various other by throw their opponents out of trees. The bear listed below has the advantage because the bear above cannot quickly hang on and also face downward to fight back. Likewise the reduced bear appears confident that these benefits and part bears have also come up trees after people who assumed climbing to be prudent. Grizzlies, too, can climb – perhaps not together quickly, however they have been recognized to assault people that climbed tree to escape. Watch our Play section for much more information.

Myth #7: Bears space carnivores.

Fact: return classified in the bespeak carnivora, grizzly and black bears are omnivores since they eat both plants and animals. Just a tiny percentage of their diet covers meat, which includes fish, insects and also other mammals (the exact percentage is dependant on the type of food is accessible in their habitat).

Myth #8: bears have bad eyesight

Fact: Bears watch in colour and have an excellent vision comparable to humans. Your night vision is excellent and also they are specifically attuned to detecting movement. Like numerous animals, bears’ eyes have actually a reflective layer called the tapetum lucidum lining the earlier of the eyeball. This layer mirrors light back through the retina, allowing light to wake up light-sensitive cell in the retina a 2nd time, thereby enhancing night vision. This is what gives dogs, cats and also many nocturnal pets that distinct, bright environment-friendly eyeshine when they space flashed through a irradiate at night.

Myth #9: Bears that wander into inhabited areas such together campsites, rural towns or cottage areas are dangerous

Fact: the is nearly impossible for a be afflicted with to make its daily excursions without walking with someone’s exclusive property. Bears might travel thousands of kilometres in their find for food. If you have actually stored your food and also garbage properly, the be affected by each other will likely move on. Remember, trouble bears aren’t born, they’re produced through mismanagement of human food and also garbage. If bears are hanging around, other is attracting them. Remove the attraction will certainly usually settle the problem.


Myth #10: shoot or relocating a ‘nuisance’ bear will fix the problem

Fact: remove the bear and also not the attractant will certainly only create an chance for one more bear to relocate in, developing a vicious bicycle of conflict and killing.

Myth #11: transferring a rifle is safer than bear pepper spray

Fact: A person’s opportunity of incurring severe injury indigenous a charging grizzly doubles when bullets space fired versus once bear pepper spray is provided (Dr. Stephen Herrero). Those hurt defending themselves through bear pepper spray experienced much shorter attacks and less significant injuries 보다 those who made decision to use weapons (US Fish and Wildlife Service). Click below to read the full report. Bears room actually attractive to pepper spray residue if the is injected on the floor or on objects. Never spray it roughly a time or ~ above yourself. When offered defensively, pepper spray need to be sprayed straight in the attack bear’s eyes or nose. Click below for much more information.

Myth #12: one of the most dangerous encounters is getting between a mother black bear and also her cubs

Fact: due to the fact that black bears have the right to tree their cubs, it is rarely for castle to strike a human being in defence the cubs. However, if you are everywhere near a mommy grizzly’s cubs, she might really well perceive you as a threat. The possibilities are good that she will just bluff charge and also stop well brief of physics contact. You need to do whatever you have the right to to display her that you room not a threat, otherwise the results could be tragic. Be quiet, make yourself smaller and also retreat.

Myth #13: human being traveling in bear nation are often attacked

Fact: Bear strikes are extremely rare. Although there space thousands of human-bear to meet every year, just a very few result in an individual injury. Most bears will certainly actually retreat prior to you are even aware of your presence. That is quiet important, however, to continue to be alert and also know what to do.

Myth #14: the is attention to get in bear country when menstruating

Fact: existing evidence says that menstruation go not boost the likelihood the an strike by a black color or grizzly bear, however tampons space recommended end pads. They might be disposed of by burning and then packing the end the remains.


Myth #15: play dead throughout an attack.

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Fact: playing dead will occupational if you’re being struck by a mother grizzly defending her cubs. But it is the wrong point to execute if you’re being assaulted by a predatory bear. If a bear attacks (particularly a black bear) in an offensive manner and also physical contact is made, struggle for her life. Kick, punch, fight the bear with rocks or sticks or any improvised weapon you have the right to find. A predatory bear generally stalks that prey and also attacks from behind. The is frequently silent and the be afflicted with does no exhibit any type of defensive behaviors like huffing or slapping the ground. That ears may be laid back and the head held low, with its intent focused straight on you. Watch our Play section for an ext information.