Interior Department Uses Grizzly 399, Cubs As Perfect Example Of How To Travel In Bear Country

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We’re not saying we used a Twitter post as an excuse to write about Grizzly 399, the objectively best bear in Yellowstone, but hey, at least it’s not politics, right?

The U.S. Department of Interior on Wednesday showed off an image of the 24-year-old mama bear and her four cubs, noting they were the best example of how to hike in bear country.

“A sweet reminder to give other families you see on the trail plenty of space! Take it from Grizzly 399, the safest way to hike in bear country is with groups of 3 or more,” the tweet read, alongside with a picture of the grizzly and her four cubs walking away from the camera (which is probably for the best).

While we all love watching 399 and her cubs, there’s been concern recently about their eating habits. The five-some ventured farther south this fall and have been eating some human-related items, such as honey from a beekeeper’s hives and a compost pile.

That’s concerns Wyoming Game and Fish Regional Supervisor Brad Hovinga.

“Here’s a bear that’s long habituated to being around people,” Hovinga told the Jackson Hole News & Guide. “Now she’s in a new area that has different food sources, and some of those food sources are associated with human and residential activity.”

Wildlife photographer and advocate Tom Mangelsen was upset with the beekeeper for not properly taking care of his property.

“That’s not good,” Mangelsen told the newspaper. “The beekeeper needs to take responsibility for leaving honey out that the bears might find. Same thing with compost.

“You can’t just have stuff out,” he said, “and expect the bears to not find it and eat it.”

It’s not the first time this year, there has been worry about the most photographed group of bears.

One of her cubs was spotted limping around a month ago, but has seemed to improve since then.

In September, the bear family was caught on camera while the cubs were playing with traffic cones in Grand Teton National Park.

Grizzly 399 is considered the most famous bear in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. She has had around 16 cubs, including her latest four that were first seen this year.

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