VIDEO: Bear (Almost) Figures Out How To Scale Ladder
August 20, 2020
Few interactions in the natural world are at once terrifying, adorable, and funny all at the same time. Certainly, there's nothing lovable about a great white shark (if you disagree, let us know; we'd be fascinated to hear), and there's not much that's funny about a rattlesnake. But bear encounters straddle that line handily.
I know we shouldn't admit it, that it's an open secret to which no one wants to fess up unless they end up looking like the kind of clueless tourist who asks Park Rangers when they're going to let he bears out so they can see them, but: bears are cute as hell! You should NEVER EVER approach a bear, let alone give them a big warm hug, but COME ON. Just look at this guy:
In this video from Saskatchewan, a woman saw that two black bears were investigating the elevated stand she was occupying. Soon one of them began to climb the ladder just as skilfully as you or I. Maybe more skilfully than me, truth be told.
She tries to dissuade the bear from coming up higher by speaking to it so the bear knows that she is there. She also begins to wag a finger at it, making it more curious, so it climbs higher.
Finally the bear decides it will go back down the ladder, and the real show starts. First the bear hangs from the ladder by it's (formidable) teeth. Then he (or she) manages to get himself bizarrely tangled up in the ladder. The lady in the tree, who I assume is still scared spitless, can't help but laugh several times.
In a way, the video shows one of the inherent dangers of human/bear interaction. Being relatively closely related to canines, bears can exhibit behavior that looks damn cute and relatable to humans, who have ourselves been conditioned by our close relationship to man's best friend, dogs, to read that behavior as, well, cute.
But our hero, the Canadian lady in the tree stand, does not give in to the ingrained impulse to pet the bear and give it a treat, thankfully. But boy oh boy, it must have been hard.