(Urus arctos horribilis)
Grizzly Bears are one of the biggest land mammals in North America. It was estimated in the 1800's that as many as 50,000 grizzly bears ranged between the Great Plains and the Pacific Ocean in the lower 48 states. Today the grizzly bear is found in about 2 % of its previous range in the lower 48 states where around 1,300 grizzly bears remain in the wild. Alaska however has a large population of grizzlies numbering over 30,000 animals.
Grizzly Bear Facts:
- The average male grizzly bear is about 7 feet tall and weighs between 400 to 600 pounds. They generally live around 25 years.
- Grizzly bears are omnivores and eat both plants and other animals. Around 85% of their diet is green vegetation, nuts, berries, insects and roots. They do eat some meat mainly elk, moose or deer. In Alaska, Salmon is a big part of their diet.
- Female Grizzlies have 1 to 3 cubs every 3 years or so. The cubs will stay with the mother for 2 to 3 years.
- Grizzly bears hibernate in the winter usually 5 to 6 months. They live off their accumulated fat and don't eat during hibernation.
Best National Parks for Grizzly Bear Viewing
Katmai National Park, Alaska
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming
Glacier National Park, Montana
Denali National Park, Alaska
National Park Service
The Grizzly Bear in the lower 48 states was listed as Threatened in 1967. The grizzly bear recovery around Yellowstone National Park has been a great success. In 1975 it was estimated there were only 136 grizzly bears in and around Yellowstone. Today there are more than 580 animals and the USFWS is looking to take grizzlies in the Yellowstone Region off the threatened list soon.
Grizzly Bear Picture from the National Park Service.
Grizzly Bear Cubs Photo from the National Park Service.
A Group of Grizzly Bears Photographed by John Good of the National Park Service.
Grizzly Bear Fishing in Katmai National Park. NPS Photo
Grizzly Bear Photo by Dr. Chris Servheen of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Young Grizzly Bear on a log in Katmai National Park