Friday, October 26, 2007

Bears in Anchorage, Alaska.

Imagine a mom's surprise when the morning after assembling the kid's new play set, she looked out the upstairs bedroom window and saw the neighbors trying it out.

There isn't one position that does not mimic that of human children at play. Though, admittedly, travelling on all fours happens less often with Homo sapiens.

Sent in by Julie Anderson-Wade and Marian Anderson.

Donegal Browne


Karen Anne said...

I wonder if those are cubs, adults, or a bear family. They all look about the same size.

Donegal Browne said...

Karen Anne,

I wondered the same thing and so began comparing relative sizes of young bears and playground equipment.

There are lots of variables here but this is what I came up with.

First the play area, it was built for very young children so is unlikely to be one of the models that is the widest nor highest.

Female black bears can in a bountiful year produce litters of four young. These bears are obviously playing, something that full grown bears have pretty much grown out of.

My surmise is that these four are cubs from the same litter and are getting on toward yearling age. Mom is most likely still around but would not feel the need to be close enough to them where she would need to expose herself so close to a house. She may be off a little way foraging or just keeping an eye on them from the bushes. Pretty much as a human mom collapses on a bench at the playground and is just utterly relieved to be off her feet and able to sit for a moment uninterrupted. Somehow in this case, I doubt that Mom will have to deal with a daughter running up to tattle on her brother's nefarious activities.