Bears fascinate many people, and the guy in this clip is more fascinated with them than most. He is sitting astride what appears to be a pet grizzly bear while taking a shot of what is probably vodka, given that he is Russian! The bear seems to be tolerating this attention remarkably well. However, you may notice that it is yawning, which can signify that the bear feels threatened and is acting defensively. Given the size of this grizzly, it also looks like this is a young bear. All the same, this is not the best way to act when you are around grizzly bears if you want to be sure of staying safe.
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How Do Grizzly Bears Normally Behave?
Most grizzly bears will avoid contact with a human if they hear them coming. If you keep your distance from a bear, they will usually move away from you and get on with looking for food. If the bear has noticed you, they may feel threatened. This may result in them making bluff charges in your direction. They may race towards you but turn away or change direction at the last moment. You may also notice that the bear acts defensively by woofing, drooling, growling, or snapping their jaws. They may also make yawning facial expressions and pin back their ears. If they want to learn more about you, they may stand on their hind legs to get a better look at you and pick up your scent.
How to Act During a Grizzly Bear Encounter
The most important things you can do are to stay calm and make sure that the grizzly bear knows you are a human! Grizzly bears do not hunt humans as prey animals. Therefore, the less like a prey animal you can look, the better! Start by talking calmly and stand your ground. Slowly raise your arms to look more prominent and like a human. Do not scream because this sounds like a high-pitched squeal emitted by many of the animals that grizzly bears hunt.
If you have small children with you, pick them up and move to higher ground if you can. Move slowly away sideways so that you can keep an eye on the bear. Also, sideways movements are interpreted by bears as non-threatening. Finally, do not climb a tree because even large grizzlies can make it part of the way up a tree trunk!
The photo featured at the top of this post is © Andrea C. Miller/Shutterstock.com
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