There doesn’t seem to be a lack of black bears on northern Vancouver Island and sightings have become a regular occurrence.
Most sightings occur by the roadside where the bears eat grass, or on one of our numerous beaches, where they can be found flipping over rocks foraging for crabs.
Black bears are mostly non-aggressive unless threatened or antagonized. There are very few attacks; however, you should still treat this animal with respect. For more information on black bears, preventing encounters and how to handle encounters see: http://www.bearsmart.com The Get Bear Smart Society. This site is comprehensive and informative and will answer any question you may have on bears.
Predators: Mostly humans and some Grizzlies have been known to fight black bears. There are generally no Grizzlies on Vancouver Island, however, on occasion; one will make its way from the mainland.
Black bears are mostly vegetarians and eat berries (Salmonberries and Huckleberries seem to be among their favorites) as well as grass, insects, grubs, crabs and other crustaceans.
Black bears live an average of 20 years and can weigh anywhere between 150 and 600 lbs.
They live in dens and hibernate in the winter depending on the local climate and food supply. The lack of food during the winter on northern Vancouver Island ensures they hibernate at least part of the season.
They are excellent tree climbers and swimmers.
They tend to be solitary animals, females have an average of 2 to 3 cubs at a time. They stay with their mother for about 2 years before becoming independent.
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