Here are 21 facts about bears cutting across different species.
Bears are well-known animals: some species more well-known than others. Here are some little known facts about them cutting across some of the different bear species alive today.
1) A group of bears is called a sloth or sleuth.
2) The polar bear is the largest of all bears. Males of the species can measure up to 3 meters (10 feet) long and weigh 680 kg (1,500 lbs.) That’s actually about the combined weight of eight human adults. Females are about 50 percent smaller than the males.
3) Bears have a very keen sense of smell. In fact, their sense of smell is likely more sensitive than all other mammals even including dogs.
A Polar bear can track down a scent from over 20 miles (32 km) away and they’ll even detect a dead seal under 3 feet of solid ice. That’s why repellent spray is so effective at keeping them away.
4) An adult bear has no natural predators except for tigers.
5) Though polar bears look white, their hair is actually translucent. Also, their skin is all black under their fur to absorb some heat from the sun.
6) Unlike the majority of mammalian animals, bears can see objects in color.
7) The koala bear isn’t actually a bear: it’s a marsupial. Thus, they are not related to the bear family at all.
8) Bears are adventurous eaters. They have been seen eating engine oil, rubber boots, and even snowmobile seats.
9) Teddy bears got their name from one-time US President Theodore ‘Teddy’ Roosevelt. In fact, he had a pet bear while in office.
10) A brown bear was a part of the Polish Army in World War II. He was used to carry shells to the frontline and he was also taught how to salute.
11) In Churchill, Canada, it’s customary to leave your car unlocked so pedestrians can run in case they need to escape from a Polar bear.
12) The Greenland shark is one of the few animals that can capture and eat a Polar bear!
13) The Polar bear is the only true carnivorous bear species. Others eat a mixed diet of meat and plants in varying quantities
14) A Polar bear can swim for a 96 km (60 mile) stretch at a time without pausing or resting.
15) A lot of things happen in bears even while hibernating e.g. pregnant females give birth, heart rate reduces to a mere 8 beats per minute, and urine is converted into protein and used as food.
16) An adult bear can run fast enough to catch a running horse at up to 40 mph whereas the fastest speed for a human is 27 mph by Usain Bolt.
17) The most widely distributed bear worldwide is the brown bear. Though the American black bear is the most common species.
18) The Giant Panda is so different from other bears and so ancient that it’s referred to as a living fossil.
19) Bear gallbladders are very valuable in Asia. In fact, when priced per gram, it’s often more expensive than gold. The most expensive bear gallbladder ever bought was auctioned in South Korea and sold for a whopping US$64,000.
20) The Kermode, ghost, or spirit bear is a very rare white variant of the American black bear. Native Americans believed that this bear type had supernatural powers.
21) About 8,000 bears are held captive in ‘bear farms’ in China. Their bile is extracted for use in traditional Chinese medicine.