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7 Things You Didn’t Know About Grizzlies

Among the rugged landscapes of North America, a true king of the wild reigns supreme – the grizzly bear. With their imposing presence and incredibly large paws, these beautiful predators have captivated humans for centuries, as we have captured their attention with our lunch. While some National Park goers may fear a bear encounter and religiously use a bear box, there’s a world of lesser-known facts to know that paint a more charming picture of these magnificent creatures. Keep reading to discover some lesser-known, yet fascinating grizzly bear facts.

Grizzlies Use Their Super Nose to Find Your Food

things-you-didnt-know-about-grizzlies
Image by Jared Lloyd

With all the bear warnings in so many National Parks, it might not be that surprising to learn that grizzly bears have an exceptional sense of smell, which is estimated to be seven times better than that of a bloodhound. So that’s 2,100 times better than a human’s.  

They Live a Long Time

things-you-didnt-know-about-grizzlies
Image by Mark Newman

Grizzly bears can live longer than many people realize. In the wild, they can live up to 20 to 25 years, so you might actually run into the same grizzly more than once. 

They Love Binging and Sleeping, Just Like You

things-you-didnt-know-about-grizzlies
Image by Rebecca Harding

In preparation for hibernation, grizzlies undergo a period called hyperphagia. During this time, which typically occurs in the fall, they consume an enormous amount of food and gain a ton of weight to sustain them through their winter dormancy. They don’t enter a deep sleep state like other hibernating animals, but rather a state of torpor. With just a sleepy low metabolic rate, they can wake quickly if disturbed.

Grizzlies Are Fantastic Gardeners

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Image by Galen Rowell

As they roam through their habitat, grizzlies scatter seeds from the fruits and berries they consume. This unintentional “gardening” contributes to the ecosystem’s diversity and helps propagate various plant species.

They Rarely Forget a Place They’ve Been

things-you-didnt-know-about-grizzlies
Image by Mark Newman

Thank goodness we have map apps because humans certainly can’t say the same. Grizzlies have an impressive memory and can remember the locations of food sources and good places to hunt for years. They can even remember almost everything they’ve ever been taught and seen.

Grizzlies Are Insanely Fast

things-you-didnt-know-about-grizzlies
Image by Paul Souders

Despite their large size, grizzlies are surprisingly fast and agile. They can run at speeds of up to 35 miles per hour for short distances. They can also climb trees, so probably not the best escape plan if you spot a grizzly in the wild.

They Love to Play

things-you-didnt-know-about-grizzlies
Image by Jared Lloyd

Grizzly bears, especially cubs, are extremely playful. They have wrestling matches, as well as a romp around trees, to help them develop essential skills they will use later in life.

While Grizzlies are intimidating huge bears, remember, they are also beautiful powerful animals. If you ever encounter a grizzly bear in the wild, it’s essential to treat them with respect and keep a safe distance, and especially don’t try to take a selfie. It is crucial to continue efforts to protect and conserve these magnificent creatures for future generations to enjoy.

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