” The finest thing people can carry out for bears is change misconceptions v facts.” – Dr. Lynn Rogers

Bears have fascinated human beings for millennia. As among the most adaptable and also versatile mammals top top earth, their behaviour stirs fear, awe, wonder, and also curiosity in us. Unfortunately, there are still numerous myths neighboring the lives and behaviour that bears that negatively influence our relationships with them.

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Stories of ferocious assaults by blood-thirsty bear on defenceless hikers make an excellent lead stories in the media. The overwhelming sense conveyed in these story is the bears room dangerous, typical creatures that are an extreme threat to world in any circumstance. This, the course, is inaccurate in ~ best and unhelpful in ~ worst.

Another frequently held legend is the bears are cuddly creatures the resemble the teddy bears we owned together kids. While over there is no doubt the bears have the power to cause children’s imaginations, it is necessary that the story we share through our youngsters be based on facts fairly than fantasy.

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

Bears space intelligent and also resourceful wild mammals the deserve ours respect. A better knowledge the the behaviour, ecology and also habitat requirements of bears is crucial if we room to find out to co-exist peacefully v these magnificent creatures.


Myth #1: Bears room unpredictable

Fact: Bears usage body language and vocalizations to show their intentions. Learning around bear behaviour have the right to be beneficial to people who live or recreate in bear country.

Myth #2: bears can’t operation down hill

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

Myth #3: A be affected by each other standing on its hind legs is around to charge

Fact: Actually, a be affected by each other standing top top its hind legs is just trying to much better identify what has recorded its attention. Together I’m certain you’ll agree, it’s much much easier to see, hear and smell things from a stand position, than down on all fours.

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

Fact: Bears choose natural, wild food uneven it is complicated to find and human food is too easy to get. Also bears that routinely eat person food/waste

still eat natural foodstuffs whenever they’re plentiful. Disputes usually increase when natural foods run out – a great time to be more vigilant of be affected by each other attractants on her property; such together bird feed, pet food, fruit trees/berry bushes, barbecue grease and compost. Click here to learn an ext about just how to come to be Bear Smart.

Myth #5: bear bells are the best way to stop a surprise encounter

Fact: It’s finest to alert bear of your existence by talking loudly, to sing songs or breaking sticks. Try to hike in a group, on created trails, throughout daylight hours. View our Play section for an ext information.


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

Fact: regardless of all their timidness ~ above the ground, black color bears seem come feel more courageous in trees. Bears sometimes kill each various other by throwing their opponents out of trees. The bear below has the benefit because the bear above cannot quickly hang on and also face downward to struggle back. Additionally the reduced bear appears confident of these advantages and some bears have also come up trees after people who assumed climbing to be prudent. Grizzlies, too, have the right to climb – perhaps not as quickly, however they have actually been known to assault people who climbed trees to escape. Watch our Play section for an ext information.

Myth #7: Bears space carnivores.

Fact: although classified in the bespeak carnivora, grizzly and black bears room omnivores because they eat both plants and animals. Just a small percentage of your diet consists meat, which contains fish, insects and other mammals (the precise percentage is dependant top top the form of food is obtainable in your habitat).

Myth #8: bears have bad eyesight

Fact: Bears watch in colour and have an excellent vision similar to humans. Your night vision is excellent and they are particularly attuned come detecting movement. Like countless animals, bears’ eyes have a reflective layer called the tapetum lucidum lining the back of the eyeball. This layer reflects light back through the retina, permitting light to stimulate light-sensitive cells in the retina a second time, thereby improving night vision. This is what offers dogs, cats and many nocturnal animals that distinct, bright green eyeshine once they space flashed with a light at night.

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

Fact: the is practically impossible for a be affected by each other to do its everyday excursions without walking v someone’s personal property. Bears might travel hundreds of kilometres in their search for food. If you have stored her food and also garbage properly, the be afflicted with will most likely move on. Remember, problem bears aren’t born, they’re created through mismanagement of human food and also garbage. If bears room hanging around, other is attracting them. Remove the attraction will usually deal with the problem.


Myth #10: shooting or relocating a ‘nuisance’ bear will deal with the problem

Fact: remove the bear and not the attractant will only develop an possibility for an additional bear to relocate in, developing a vicious bike of conflict and killing.

Myth #11: moving a rifle is more secure than bear pepper spray

Fact: A person’s chance of incurring severe injury native a charging grizzly doubles once bullets room fired versus as soon as bear pepper spray is supplied (Dr. Stephen Herrero). Those hurt defending themselves with bear pepper spray experienced much shorter attacks and less significant injuries 보다 those who chose to use weapons (US Fish and Wildlife Service). Click right here to read the complete report. Bears are actually attracted to pepper spray residue if that is injected on the floor or ~ above objects. Never ever spray it roughly a tent or top top yourself. When used defensively, pepper spray should be sprayed straight in the attacking bear’s eyes or nose. Click here for an ext information.

Myth #12: among the many dangerous to meet is getting in between a mother black bear and also her cubs

Fact: due to the fact that black bears can tree their cubs, the is rare for them to assault a person in defence of cubs. However, if you are almost everywhere near a mother grizzly’s cubs, she might an extremely well consciousness you as a threat. The chances are good that she will simply bluff charge and also stop well short of physical contact. You have to do whatever you deserve to to display her the you are not a threat, otherwise the consequences could it is in tragic. It is in quiet, do yourself smaller and retreat.

Myth #13: civilization traveling in bear nation are often attacked

Fact: Bear assaults are incredibly rare. Back there space thousands the human-bear meet every year, just a very few result in personal injury. Most bears will certainly actually retreat before you are even aware of their presence. It is quiet important, however, to remain alert and also know what come do.

Myth #14: the is dangerous to get in bear nation when menstruating

Fact: existing evidence argues that menstruation does not increase the likelihood the an attack by a black or grizzly bear, however tampons space recommended end pads. They might be disposed of by burning and then packing out the remains.


Myth #15: beat dead throughout an attack.

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Fact: playing dead will occupational if you’re being struck by a mother grizzly defending she cubs. Yet it is the wrong thing to do if you’re being attacked by a predatory bear. If a bear strikes (particularly a black color bear) in an offensive manner and physical contact is made, hit for your life. Kick, punch, fight the bear through rocks or rod or any type of improvised weapon you can find. A predatory bear usually stalks its prey and also attacks native behind. It is regularly silent and the be affected by each other does not exhibit any type of defensive behaviors like huffing or slapping the ground. Its ears might be laid earlier and that is head organized low, v its will focused straight on you. View our Play section for an ext information.