North American Bear Center - Bear Basic Facts

North American Bear Center - Bear Basic Facts
Quick Black Bear Facts
by Lynn L. Rogers, PhD

Folklore: Perhaps no other animals have so excited the human imagination as bears. References to bears are found in ancient and modern literature, folk songs, legends, mythology, children stories, and cartoons. Bears are among the first animals that children learn to recognize. Bear folklore is confusing because it is based on caricatures, with Teddy Bears and the kindly Smoky on one hand and ferocious magazine cover drawings on the other. Dominant themes of our folklore are fear of the unknown and man against nature, and bears have traditionally been portrayed as the villains to support those themes, unfairly demonizing them to the public. A problem for black bears is that literature about bears often does not separate black bears from grizzly bears.

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