Characteristics of Grizzly Bears

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Grizzly bears are mammals known for their huge size. They belong to the family of brown bears and are seen more in North America. They usually do not attack other creatures unless provoked. Despite its amicable behavior, it can be one of the most dangerous and fiercest bears alive.

Physical

  • Not all grizzly bears are the same when it comes to physical characteristics, and they differ quite a lot as far as size, shape and color are concerned. Grizzly bears colors include yellowish brown, biege, black and dark brown, and the color varies according to geographical location. The white hair on the shoulders and back of the bear give it a grizzled look and, thus, the name. They also have a characteristic hump between their shoulders. The bear is three to four feet tall while resting on all four feet and five to eight feet tall on two feet. The bear can weigh between 400 and 1,700 pounds, and the male bear is larger than the female bear, sometimes even double their size.

Food

  • The grizzly bear feeds on vegetables and animals. However, the major portion of their diet consists of plants and some grizzly bears eat only plants. The bears eat anything edible but become choosy when food is abundant food. The meats that the bear eats generally are fishes and dead animals killed or left over by other animals.

Breeding & Mating

  • The female bear attains maturity between the ages of three and five years. The bears usually mate during May and July, and cubs are born between January and March. During the mating period, the male bears will move around, sniffing the ground and air for a potential mate. The female bear does not become pregnant immediately and there is a delay of a few months during which the fertilized egg waits in the female bear's womb until the right time for fetus development.

Habitation

  • Grizzly bears are abundant in the mountainous regions of Alaska and Canada. They usually are found in the remote forests due to human encroachment. Grizzly bears had been declared an endangered species in 1975 according to the Endangered Species Act. In the 1800s, there were more than 50,000, but the number has been on the decline since then. Only in Canada, Alaska and the Yellowstone National Park has the bear not been considered endangered. Grizzly bears can live up to 40 to 50 years, but the average life span usually is 15 to 34 years.

References

  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images
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