Here’s your daily reminder that grizzly bears are metal as hell: a video of a grizzly bear dragging an elk off the side of the road and eating it while it’s still alive. I feel like I’m watching something I shouldn’t be watching.
In an Instagram video that was taken in July 2021, a huge grizzly bear is seemingly preparing to drag a kicking elk into the woods. But, the carnage unfolds right by the side of the road. The grizzly tears into the elk at the head end, while the elk is obviously still alive. Watch at your own risk. This is nature’s snuff film.
The caption reads, “The scary thing about bears is that they are not concerned with whether or not their prey is dead, they are strong enough to just hold them down and start eating – and as long as she avoids the flailing hooves of the elk, she’ll be safe to feed here for a little while.”
Another reminder to avoid grizzly bears. While predatory grizzly attacks on humans are rare, there are still an average of 11.4 attacks in the US per year. Bottom line: if you see a grizzly bear, leave it alone. If it attacks, it will eat you alive, apparently. Let this video be a wake-up call if you ever drunkenly thought you could take a grizzly bear in a fight.
Grizzly Bears Awaken From Hibernation in Yellowstone
Earlier this month, Yellowstone National Park saw its first grizzly emerge from hibernation. A pilot working with the National Park Service spotted the first grizzly bear of the season on March 7. “On Monday, March 7, a pilot supporting Yellowstone National Park wildlife research observed the first grizzly bear of 2022,” the park announced in a news release. “The adult bear was seen walking in a meadow in the west-central part of the park.”
Grizzlies lose about 15 to 30 percent of their body mass when they hibernate. But, that doesn’t mean they’re all skin and bones when they come out. They develop lean body mass as they snooze. But, they do emerge with a ravenous hunger.
Most often, the male bears emerge first in March, and sometimes as early as February. Females and cubs don’t come out until April or May. This protects them and gives them a better chance of survival. Because the hungry males often cannibalize cubs, emerging once the males have had time to slake their hunger lets the species flourish.
Yellowstone Reminds Visitors to be ‘Bear Aware’
Kerry Gunther, Yellowstone National Park bear management biologist, was quoted in the park’s news release explaining the best ways to avoid bear encounters. “Spring visitors hiking, skiing, or snowshoeing in the park can reduce the chances of encountering bears by avoiding low elevation winter ranges, thermal areas, and south-facing slopes where bears seek out ungulate carcasses and spring vegetation shortly after emerging from winter dens,” said Gunther.
Grizzlies are a neat sight, but should be treated with “respect and caution,” as Gunther said in last year’s press release. Carry bear spray, and make noise if you come upon one on a hike. Stay in groups, and never approach a bear if you see one.