Last weekend we had our annual visit from a bear. I am pretty sure it is the same one which has been passing through for the past several years. My how he’s grown! More of that in a while.

When we first found this house we were completely enchanted with the wildlife, just amazing. Though admittedly my current feelings about raccoons are torn. Yes they are cute. But leave my tomato plant alone! We also have birds galore, deer, groundhogs, the occasional fox, snakes that luckily are rare, squirrels, chipmunks, turtles and sometimes, black bears.

The first bear we saw would not have been in any great danger of being turned into a rug because it was older and quite motley looking. I spotted it from the office, it was out by the washing line and was slowly making its way around the house. It disappeared from sight so I moved to the kitchen to try to see it again. Nothing. So I climbed up on the kitchen counter by the sink to get a better look. Our house is built into the side of a hill so the kitchen window is up one floor which is probably just as well. Suddenly I heard a kind of huffing sound and there it was, front paws against the side of the building just under the kitchen window, looking at me through the screen. Had there been an Olympic athletic scout in my kitcehn I reckon I could have had a chance on the team. For a gently rounded, middle age woman the dismount I did from the counter was fast and high, and I landed on my feet. TaDa!! Apparently unimpressed, the bear just ambled off into the bush.

That particular year there were many bear sightings locally. So many that it made the larger press. A very irritated ‘man from the Ministry’ in Toronto issued a statement saying we were all imagining things, that there were no bears in this area and that any damage seen was done by cows. I wrote him an open letter in the local newspaper. I invited him to a free weekend of camping in my garden. I would even provide a tent, sleeping bag and food as long as he took a quick note of the ‘cow’ claw marks on my shed door and didn’t mind sleeping beside the big pile of ‘cow’ poop beside the tent. I recommended he wear his brown trousers. The newspaper kindly published but sadly the man from the Ministry did not reply or take me up on my offer.

Over the next few years I would see bears come up the hill, across the deck and through the arbour but I was never quick enough to grab the camera. Then, two years ago we spotted a new one, fairly young, I would say maybe a two or three year old out on his own for the first time. Here are some photos.

Young Bear by arbour

Bear two years ago

Hello?

Then this past weekend, another visit. I reckon it was the same young man, all grown up. Sorry for the lousy photo but he’s quite definitely male 😉
July 2011 all grown up

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