As winter weather rolls in, black bears are bedding down for hibernation.
Rick Stronks, the chief naturalist at Algonquin Provincial Park, shares some interesting facts about these seasonal deep sleepers:
It’s getting a bit cold, there’s not much food anymore, and Black Bears are thinking seriously about having a long nap.
Black bears in Ontario Parks start heading to the den by mid-October.
We know you have questions about Black Bears’ big sleeps, so let’s go through for FABQs (frequently asked bear questions):
The nights are getting cooler, the days are getting shorter, and the bears know there is limited time to finish packing on the pounds before retiring to their winter dens.
Food will only be available until about mid-October, so the days of feasting are quickly ending.
Like the summer, in September bears are focused on eating. But these days, that focus reaches a whole new level, called hyperphagia.
Ontario’s Black Bears are busy looking for food in August!
They only have a few a short months before they go into hibernation.
In August, Black Bears are focused on finding delicious berries like blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries.
Black Bears live across Ontario in forested areas where they can find enough food, shelter, and denning sites. Our provincial parks are their home, and over 90% of our parks are in bear country.
A safe bear sighting during one of your adventures with Ontario Parks can be a lasting memory. Educating yourself about bears before your visit is important and the mark of a responsible park visitor.
We want to share space with bears, keeping our human visitors and all our wildlife residents safe.
If you’re planning a visit, here are some important safety tips about Black Bears:
Berries are finally ripening, and it is time for Black Bears in Ontario to start packing on the pounds.
In July, breeding season ends and Black Bears get down to the serious business of consuming as much food as they can.
Planning a visit and wondering whether you’ll see a Black Bear? Tune in to our monthly Black Bear feature where our ecologists let you know common bear behaviour for the month or season.
Love is in the air in June for some Black Bears!
It’s mating season, which runs from about mid-May through July.
It’s more important than ever to practice bear safety throughout your visit!
Here’s what our bears are up to this month: