By Wendy Chambers,Worldwidehippies -SO lets talk Grizzly Bears or should I say Ursus arctos horribilis, even the scientific name strikes fear into folks, in fact the word “grizzly” refers to “grizzled” or grey hairs in the bears fur, but when naturalist George Ord formally named the bear in 1815, he misunderstood the word as “grisly“, to produce its biological Latin specific or subspecific name ”horribilis“, that, along with the media portrayal that these MAN EATING beasts are out to kill us needs a 2012 update. Grizzly bears have 2 main focuses in their day to day life, the main one is to eat and the second one is to sleep and during 4 weeks in June its all about getting it on!, they lead simple lives, are intelligent, compassionate creatures and really do not like humans, when I say don’t like humans, I mean they try to avoid us at all costs, for one we smell bad, a grizzly bears sense of smell is 7 times stronger than a bloodhounds, imagine what they can smell!! they also check out our pheromones, yes they do know whether or not we are scared, relaxed or wary.
Most bear attacks (which are rare) happen when a human has encroached into bear habitat and surprises a bear or a mother bear is protecting her cubs but of course once the media spin is put on it, it is all the bears fault! Folks need more education and need to understand that we invade their territory so should respect them.
At the moment in British Columbia, Canada the Grizzly Bear Trophy hunt is in full swing, now this barbaric practice has been going on for a long time and government figures (these do not include poached bears or orphaned cubs left behind when a mother bear is mistakenly killed) estimate that 385 Grizzly bears were slaughtered last year, not for sustenance, not for clothing but for a trophy. This species listed as a species of concern can be hunted and killed and then stuffed or laid on a floor – what the f**k is going on. Now I am not going to post horrific pictures of trophy hunters and their kills, you can find those easily online and my choice to do that will probably make this article get less hits as humans thrive on shock pictures and graphic footage but my aim is different, I want people to know that the Grizzly bear just wants to live its life, why should we deny it that? One day these bears will no longer exist we will hunt them to extinction, they need to be on the endangered list now and there are folks working out there to help those orphaned and displaced grizzlies. A pilot Grizzly Bear rehabilitation and release program is underway at Northern Lights Wildlife Society and the aim of that project is to:
- Provide orphaned cubs with a safe and species oriented environment to grow up in, until they are old enough to be released back into the wild
- To monitor cubs after the release to answer questions in regards to their survival rate, possible human/bear conflict situations and their ability to fit into the wild population
- To gather valuable information about grizzly behaviour, nutritional needs, medical treatment and facility requirements
- The results of the project are to be used as a future foundation to create sustainable rehabilitation standards for grizzly cubs
Here is a short video clip of the project in full swing
8 Grizzlies have been successfully released back into the wild
Please take a moment to think about Grizzly Bears in a different way and find out just how amazing these beautiful creatures are and how important they are to our eco systems. You can also sign a petition which is going to be presented to the government to STOP the grizzly killing here
Wendy Chambers is a writer, photographer, and eco friendly treehugger who has published articles in Modern Hippie Magazine. She is the author of bearsinterrupted.com, and can normally be found in the forest with camera in hand and a smile on her face. She resides in Beautiful British Columbia and is happiest when exploring the amazing diverse eco systems and capturing the beauty of the province on film.