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"Happiness always looks small when you hold it in your hands, but let it go, and at once you learn how big and precious it is."
Maxim Gorky

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Our little visitor...

Our property is on a 'bear bi-way' and this time of year it's a stopping grounds for the resident bears.
They come for the apples, plums and berries
 which are not behind fences or electric wires.
We do not encourage them and in fact try to discourage them with dogs
barking,  noise making and generally scooting them on their way.
But sometimes it's a mother and a cub or two (or even three one year),
that we are quiet about and bring the dog in the house to let
them take the wind fall off the ground or perhaps
just to rest in the woods beside the house.
Must be a lot of work finding food for hungry cubs.
This particular day the pair were in part of the orchard
when something scared the little cub up into the tree...
...well, little for a bear. He probably still weighs a good 80 or 100 pounds
and is about as big as a St Bernard dog,  but is still a cub.
 He sat up there for quite a while, me looking, him looking back...
...mama bear waited patiently in the woods below...
I left them alone and about an hour later quietly had a look and the
cub had climbed down and we had a few more glances before the two of them wandered off...
Notice the little white patch on his chest?
(Actually I'm not sure if it's a male but I've just been calling it a 'him'.) 
Then the other day he was back, on his own...
Mama bear was no where to be seen so we figured she had left
him in this 'safe 'zone' and gone off to be with Papa bear to make
more cubs for next year. The adult male bear would likely try to kill
this young guy so he is left on his own for a while... 
Look how lovely his coat is!
Did you know that the Queen's guards hats are made from Canadian black bear fur?
Not too sure about the ethics of that in this day and age.
These were taken from our upper porch. 
He was around for about three days, checking out the trees...
 I was watching to make sure he didn't do them any damage.
For such a big and seemingly clumsy animal, bears are quite
nimble and extremely good at tree climbing...
So don't ever try and hide from a black bear by climbing a tree! 
 Sorry little guy, no more apples for you...
 Again, we observed each other from safe distances...
He took a little rest. 
I haven't seen him now in about a week so I'm hoping that mama has come to
get him and take him down to the creeks where the salmon have begun
to run. Hopefully they have stayed out of trouble.
 Did you know that an adult bear needs something like
20,000 calories a day right now to fatten up for the winter months?
Bears can be a real problem around here but it's because of humans.
Leaving out garbage is an open invitation for them to find something
easy and they develop bad habits fast.
Like I said, we don't encourage them but allow them to pass through
as long as they be as bears should be.
After all, this is their home before it's ours.
They've been traipsing through these woods much longer than we have.
We try to teach them that hanging around causing trouble is bad.
But like I said, hanging around once in a while not causing trouble is
tolerated for short periods.
What a gift to be able to observe these incredibly beautiful animals.
(this picture was taken a few years ago, two cubs visited that day)


Melody said...

How fascinating to see them so close! I can't believe the cub is the size of my St. Bernard(s)! Yikes! That's wonderful that they stop by to clean up the leftovers! Waste not want not! Nature is amazing!!! :)))

Suz said...


Nancy Kay said...

Holy Smokes! I'm glad the bears are just passing through and aren't causing any problems. You snapped some very good photos of the cubs! I sure would be keeping my distance though. Mamas can get really protective! Living in bear country and near Yellowstone Park, we hear too many scary stories of bear encounters. I'm glad your visitors have behaved themselves!!

Aputsiaq said...

Thanks for sharing these amazing bear photos! Isn't it amazing that such big guys cant climb And you made an important point when you wrote that your land was their home before humans came - and now you're trying the best to respect them. Thanks!

Cobalt Violet said...

Wow!!!! Oh my Gosh!
I am so envious you get to see this!
Although, I might be totally freaked out, it's also completely amazing and wonderful. Such a beautiful animal! And you got some aMAZing shots!!!

sandra hagan said...

Most delightful photos and information. Cub is so precious.

Excellent photo clarity.