The bear, an ancient spirit animal worshiped in many traditions The bear as a spirit animal or totem is one of the most ancient worshiped animals. Remains of bears have been found in many archeological sites in Europe especially, where bear bones and skulls were found together with human bones dating back to the Neanderthals. It is said that the Vikings would wear bear skins in times of war to scare off their enemies.
They would appear as powerful as these wild animals. Bears symbolize warrior spirit and courage to fight. The bear’s spirit would be invoked to help the warriors in the battle. In ancient Greece and Rome, the bear was a totem animal associated with the Goddess Artemis and Diana, goddesses of fertility. In contrast, for the Celts, the bear would represent the sun. The spirit of the bear and healing Since the bear is often associated with shamans in many traditions, this spirit animal can symbolize healing abilities and stepping into the role of the healer.
If the bear shows up in your life, it may also be time to take care of your own needs for healing, whether it’s at the physical, emotional or spiritual level.See Also: How To Stop Animal Cruelty
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From a jungle of rain-washed pines and junipers spearing the recent blueness in the Florida sky, ran a little, tawny-haired boy. His bare ft, extending from his overalled legs, crackled against the fallen palmettos. He leaped into your air, flinging his arms toward a flock of white doves circling earlier mentioned him.
Standing as tall as 2.5 m (8 ft) and weighing up to 360 kg (800 lbs.), the grizzly bear is a subspecies of brown bear that inhabits western Canada and the northwestern United States. Grizzly bears are specially adapted to survive the changing seasons. During warmer months, they eat a massive amount of food so they can live off body fat during the winter, when food is scarce. They may intake 40 kg (90 lbs.
) of food each day, gaining over 1 kg (2.2 lbs.) of body weight a day. As omnivores, grizzlies will eat anything nutritious they can find, gorging on nuts, fruit, leaves, roots, fungi, insects, and a variety of animals including salmon and other fish, rodents, sheep, and elk. Their diet varies depending on what foods are available for the season. In the fall, as temperatures cool and food becomes scarcer, grizzlies dig dens in the sides of hills.
They have long rounded claws (the size of human fingers) and a large mass of muscles on their backs that help them dig. These characteristics, along with small rounded ears and white-tipped (or “grizzled”) fur, distinguish grizzly bears from black bears. Advertisement The bears settle in their dens to hibernate for the winter. This deep sleep allows the grizzlies to conserve energy. Their heart rate slows down from 40 beats per minute to 8, and they do not go to the bathroom at all during these months of slumber.
Pregnant grizzly bears even give birth in their sleep! Midwinter, grizzly bear cubs (usually born in pairs) arrive into the world blind, hairless, and toothless. They use what little strength they have to nestle into their mother and nurse. For a month, the cubs feed on their mother’s milk and gain strength. By the time spring comes, the cubs have opened their eyes and grown teeth and fur; the new family is ready to venture outside the den.
The cubs stay under their mother’s care for 2-3 years. While mother grizzlies are fiercely protective of their cubs, nearly half the cubs do not survive past the first year, falling to disease, starvation, and predators like wolves, mountain lions, and adult male grizzlies. Grizzly bears have a multitude of strengths. They are highly intelligent and have excellent memories. Detecting food from great distances away, grizzlies have an astute sense of smell, even better than that of a hound dog.
They are good swimmers and fast runners, reaching speeds as high as 50 km/h (35 mph) over land. Young grizzlies also have the ability to climb trees to evade danger, but this skill fades as they become bigger. Conservation Status Brown bears are considered a species of least concern by the IUCN. However, the grizzly bear subspecies is listed as threatened by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Grizzly bears are threatened by habitat loss due to logging, development, and mining.
Human interaction also poses a threat to grizzlies. When bears are drawn close to humans, attracted by livestock, garbage, and other food, they are often exterminated. Furthermore, in Canada, people hunt grizzlies for trophy (where it is legal to do so). In the U.S., sometimes grizzlies are shot by people mistaking them for black bears, which are not protected. What You Can Do to Help If you would like to help grizzlies, you can donate to organizations such as Defender of Wildlife and National Wildlife Federation, which help preserve grizzly habitat and work toward minimizing human-bear conflicts (with measures like bear-resistant dumpsters and electric fences).
When living in or visiting grizzly bear habitat, do not feed the bears, and keep all garbage securely contained. Grizzly Bear Distribution Grizzly bears inhabit Alaska, western Canada, and parts of the northwestern United States. Advertisement Grizzly Bear Resources Blog Posts about the Grizzly Bear About the Author Abi Cushman is a lifelong animal lover and the editor-in-chief of Animal Fact Guide.
She not only writes and edits articles, she also creates animal illustrations for the site.Follow her on Twitter: @abicushman and Instagram: @abi.cushman Last updated on August 24, 2014. Share this animal article: