Friday, May 8, 2009

Lions and tigers and ...

As you know, I've been sick and haven't gotten much sleep these past few nights. Last night I was finally coughing a little less and was just starting to get drowsy, only for the neighbor's dogs to start barking. I know their barks and this was their bear bark. Just as I was starting to fall asleep, I ended up getting up to check the yard a few times. I knew the bear was out there, but it was too dark to see anything. I'd lie back down and the dogs would start up again -- over and over. I didn't get much sleep, to say the least.

A few minutes ago Rick was getting ready to leave for work and he comes in and says, "The bear is in the yard." We peek out our bedroom window and see her. It was still kind of dark and we didn't have time to fuss with camera settings, so we didn't get any good pictures of her. This was the best we could get, but at least you can see her. The good thing is that as soon as she saw us moving in the house, she took off up the hill. That's better than last year when the bears would just sit down and look at us like they were saying, "What?" This looked like the same bear as last year, but I can't be sure. She didn't have any cubs and she was limping a little. But as soon as she saw us, she skedaddled out of here, which is good. People freak out when I tell them we get bears in our yard, but I think it's cool. When we first moved here, our neighbors said to us, "You will see bears, and sometimes even grizzlies and mountain lions." So far, we've only seen black bears. Here are some facts about bears --
  • A male bear is called a boar.
  • A female bear is called a sow.
  • A baby bear is called a cub.
  • A group of bears is called a sloth.
  • An average size litter is 1-4 cubs.
  • Cubs are usually born in January.
  • Bears have a great sense of smell.
  • There are only 7 types of bears in the world.

It's weird seeing them in our yard like this. We love national parks and would spend hours driving around hoping to spot a bear. Now it's just a matter of when they'll show up. I'm glad Rick got to see this one because he usually misses them. She looked like a big teddy bear as she bounced up the hill. I can tell you, it's totally different seeing them in the daytime than it is at night. In the day, I wish they'd stick around long enough for me to get really good pictures, but at night we're like, "Okay, go home now!"


  1. And they're like, "But this is our home!" as they raid your birdfeeders.

    I was glad to read that this one ran away, too. Nothing like an indifferent bear to put you on edge.

    Hope today is a better day for you.


  2. Don't try an cuddle with the bear!!!


  3. She's pretty big. Sorry not much sleep again last night. I hope you start feeling better, I miss talking to you.


  4. Lions and tigers and bears oh my, I'm very frightened for you. Maybe skip those morning walks...

  5. Having bears in the yard sounds wonderful and scary at the same time...
    Hope you feel better!

  6. Hmmm ...

    You know, the more I look at this picture, the more I think it was the mama bear that has been around the past 2 years. She had cubs with her before, but cubs only stay with their mother a little over a year. That would explain why she was seen with cubs a lot right before we moved here, but theen only every now and then last year. I got some awesome pics of her cubs last spring. Anyway, if this is the same bear, she might have cubs in her den, so maybe they'll be making an appearance soon. Will be interesting to see if she has had more. I'm just curious to why she's limping. :(

  7. She's beautiful.I so envy you living in a place where you see such wildlife.I hope you feel your old self soon,I've been having the cough waking me up for the past 3 nights. Very frustrating!


  8. Thanks Leanne. Yeah, being woken up with a cough is no fun. On top of what I've had, Rick's been sick for a few weeks with a horrible cough, so he's kept me awake. I'm like a walking zombie!

  9. She looks like sleek and shiney. I do hope you get some good sleep tonight and that you are well on your way to recovery.

    Take care of yourself.

  10. Very cool to see such amazing wildlife in your backyard! (Though I think I'd be scared! My dad occasionally has bears at his cabin, and I get so nervous when I take the dogs out at night! Well, I make my hubby do it actually!)

  11. Oh Rena, she's so pretty!!!

    I hope she is okay, you said she was limping...

    I am a huge animal lover and would love to somehow use my illustrations as ways to raise money for wildlife funds... Especially, Polar Bears...

    We are hearing here in Ohio, that the wolf population is thriving out west too... It is good to know we humans can help these animals survive, even if it was humans who helped to endanger them in the first place!

  12. How cool!!

    We get coyotes and deer in our neighborhood occasionally. I love being able to see wildlife up close and personal :^)

  13. OMGoodness! That is insane!!! :-D wOWzers. You have a natural storytelling ability, i love your posts!

  14. I am by no means a 'city' girl but I have always lived in the suburbs of a city and can't imagine that kind of wildlife so close to my home. Saying that though, I think it would be so cool to see and sometimes wish we lived more rural. (Well until I realized that pizza places don't deliver to rural addresses here!)
    So I guess I will continue to live vicariously through your pictures!
    Thanks Rena!

  15. I just love your pics.

    Hope you are feeling better!

  16. As always, I love your pictures and stories.