At a site that is almost impossible to get to at this time of year, two bears went past trail cams. Just like their order in visiting our land, the bear with no ear tags ("untagged") was in front, being followed 24 min later by the bear with white ear tags.
|"tagged" - tag inside left ear|
I'm not sure how well he's doing. He doesn't look as fat as most bears before they go into dens for the winter but that could be because he's young. Also, he's been visiting homes. At our place, his behavior wasn't particularly bad, and he got nothing to eat. Still, he was near a house, which is dangerous for a bear.
My attitude is that it's up to us, the people living in bear territory, to make all forms of food unavailable to bears. We take the approach of making our home unattractive to bears to deter them from coming around. It's worked for us over the years. It seems as if local bears don't bother with searching for food near our home anymore.
I believe that the two who were here in December weren't long-term local bears. I'd never seen them before and they weren't hanging out in the usual places where bears like to go. That would explain why they were searching at homes where there's routinely no food available.
After seeing the two bears so close together at the last sighting, I found myself wondering if they were heading toward neighboring dens or (gasp) might even share a den. I've never read about adult male bears sharing a den so I doubt that's happening. However, I keep reading that social behavior among bears is far more common that we usually think (e.g., books by Benjamin Kilham). That's why I even mention that crazy idea.
Here's the video of the last two bears of 2018.