Kodiak Brown Bear with 1yr old cubs captured by Z 9 / 800f5.6AFS
Bear cubs, they are just the cutest critters to observe and spend time with. Folks don’t realize just how special this opportunity truly is on so many levels. Most simply revert to the old “don’t get between a mother and her cubs” or “mother bears mean certain death” when nothing could be further from the truth. Proof, I’m here sharing my photos of this family group! Yes, mother bears are fierce protectors of their young but like all bears all the time, they much rather avoid confrontation than ever advance it. We saw this family group leave time and time again rather than confront other bears. The world is challenging for a mother bear so for this mom to have three cubs and then a year later, still have three cubs means in the simplest terms, she’s a great mom!
Cubs are a handful! Most Brown / Grizzly Bears have one cub, then comes twins and the most infrequent are three cubs. You can kinda pigeonhole the characteristics of the three with some human traits. The first born is the most prococial, the one out front being adventurous, getting in trouble and giving mom a great amount of anxiety. The second born is the tag-along, being pulled between being with their older sibling adventures and the safety of mom. The last born is the mamma’s boy, always on mom’s flank and unsure of try anything new. It’s easy to assign these traits when you watch them though they can just as easily be totally wrong. But that’s the fun of watching the family group as they go about their day.
One thing is for sure, when there is any question about their environment, the cubs raise on their back legs to look out over the grass that is nearly as tall as them. If there is any perceived threat by the cubs, they are right next to mom in a heartbeat. Mom communicates to cubs with her facial disk her thought on the perceived threat and from that, they react. This mom is around 1150 pounds, she’s a gorgeous nine-year-old Kodiak Brown Bear. There is truly nothing in the area that at her age and health twould scare her, a confidence she communicates in her actions to the young. That confidence is why she permitted us to be part of her world for three days. I can’t wait to spend time again with her next spring and see what the cubs are up to. She’s a great mom!