As the weather is warming up, black bears, grizzly bears and brown bears will be coming out of their winter hibernation period and will become much more active in their search for food, to fill their empty stomachs. Polar Bears are active all year around, except for expectant females, who may remain dormant for a short period of time, until their young are ready to face the world. Some Black Bears will also be active all year around depending on climatic conditions.
The United States is home to three species of bears: Polar Bear, Brown Bear, and BlackBear, with Alaska the only State to have all three species of bears. Grizzly and Brown Bears are classified as the same species with the Grizzly Bear being a sub-species of the Brown Bear. Brown Bears are more coastal and Grizzly Bears are more land interior. Black Bears come in a variety of color phases too: blue, white, brown, cinnamon, and black. So don’t let color fool you on what species of bear you are looking at.
Want to learn more about bears? PBS Nature will be kicking off the month of May with a special three hour nature series, Bears of the Last Frontier http://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/episodes/bears-of-the-last-frontier/introduction/6524/.
Please note all pictures shown are pictures of Black Bears, photographed in Sequoia National Park, CA