Bear Encounters in Canada: Good, Bad and the Ugly

Canada is not only famous for maple syrup, ice hockey, curling, red uniform cops on horses and beaver dams, Canada is also famous for Bear sightings, from cuddly Black Bear cubs to vicious Grizzly Bear, tent ripping, run for your life encounters. One can call Canada the World Bear Capital. As more and more people get gallant with bears so the bears get more dauntless and innovative.

Grizzly bear

Black Bears and their relatives Grizzly Bears visit towns, ski villages and picnic areas more often. They eat from garbage bins or they even steal food from picnic tables. No, it’s not the story about Yogy Bear, actually we don’t know how the locals call those bears yet. What we know is that the bears have no fear from humans and that they love human food! Not humans as food, even though that can happen as well.

READ MORE: Grizzly Bear Kills Two Hikers in Alberta

Social media is full of bear encounter videos where bears fearlessly come inches close to humans and were oblivious humans chase bears and even feed them. What can go wrong, wright?! If you believe that teddy bears have anything in common with live bears, you might be the most ignorant person on our blue planet. Residents in Whistler are alarmed by social media images showing humans interacting closely with black bears there.


You guys seem to like Whistler bear videos so here’s another one. #fyp #whistler #sillytourist

♬ Frolic (From “Curb Your Enthusiasm”) – London Music Works

Due to human interactions with bears and bears getting more comfortable with eating human food, four black bears have been killed due to human conflict in Whistler this year alone. According to the bylaw, any food left outside unattended is categorized as a wildlife attractant.

The town in Banff National Park has stringent regulations on rubbish disposal, and it recently stepped up its efforts to provide homeowners with free fruit tree removal in an effort to lessen the presence of wildlife attractants.

Following a roundtable with Banff and neighbouring towns, as well as the national and provincial parks, the municipality came up with its strategy in reaction to many bears consuming human food and needing to be relocated or put down.


He couldn’t bear to watch (@Ángela Chapa / LOCAL NEWS X/ TMX via @ARK Media) #beartok #blackbear #bearattack #wildlife

♬ original sound – Get Lost

While some bear encounters can be breathtaking and even funny, bear encounters can turn out to be life threatening. Experienced hikers in British Columbia, Alberta and in Ontario wear vests with a can of bear spray, makes noise, and they keep an eye out for wildlife when they go for a run or hike in National Parks or on Bear country trails. Best preparation reduces tremendously surprise visit by a bear or bear attack, yet even best preparation can’t provide 100% safety. People who visit National Parks and known Bear country sites, must know the risks. Latest Grizzly Bear attack on Alberta hikers is a harsh reminder that we are not on top of the food chain in the wilderness.

Respecting the rules of the nature gives us the best chance to enjoy Canadas nature unharmed.

Rules to follow:

Don’t feed a bear

Don’t follow a bear

Make noise

Wear a bear spray

Store your food properly

Move in groups, never alone

Keep you dogs on leash

You can’t win a fight with a bear even though they may look so cute and cuddly

Don’t be this guy!

For more info on how to respect wildlife and how to enjoy nature unharmed, visit Parks Canada Bear safety site.

Leave a Reply