Three bear species found in northern Manitoba

Three bear species found in northern Manitoba, Iryna Chyrkova

Three bear species: black bears, polar bears and grizzlies were seen in the same northern Manitoba spot. This is something unbelievable.

Wapusk NP cameras showed a video where it can be seen that these three bear species use the same land. Such a situation happens for the first time. Doug Clark from the University of Saskatchewan said that the world had not seen this before.

Since 2011, Clark together with several other scientists, have been watching these beasts in Wapusk National Park in order to study their interaction with humans in more detail. They saw a very unusual phenomenon.

During their research, scientists saw more than 400 times how bears came: 366 polar bears, 25 black bears, and 10 grizzlies. Studies of these territories began to take place back in the 60s, and it never happened that all three species appeared here regularly. At the time it was a rarity but something has changed. Polar-grizzly hybrids showed that all bear species perhaps can be found in Beaufort Delta but it has not been proven.

Polar and black bears are frequent guests in the north of Manitoba. There are good conditions for them: the forests and the coastline make it possible to hunt. However, the appearance of grizzlies is very surprising. They probably expanded their habitat and reached Manitoba. The number of berries in local forests has increased over the past decade, perhaps it has attracted grizzly bears.

At the moment there is no evidence that all three species of bear somehow interact with each other. However, the cameras showed that their paths intersected several times in different places. scientists suggest that bears knew about each other.

At the moment, scientists have a lot of questions that they can not answer yet. How do they interact with each other? Is a new mix of bears possible in the nearest future? How will people react to this?

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