This morning, at 9:15, Jake and I went out the back door on the way to feed the sheep and the poultry. Jake immediately WUFF-ed and went to the edge of the slope behind the house, then started barking and growling loudly and charged down into the trees. I got to the edge in time to spy the backend of a bear hightailing it in the opposite direction. Then I saw a movement up higher and looked and there was a bear cub hanging on about 20 feet up a tree. So, this was mama bear and at least one cub making the attempt to come up behind our house. I don't think mama bear went too far, as Jake kept running down and barking, and then coming back to my call, and then heading back down again. I ran and grabbed the camera and managed a couple pictures of the baby. Not the best, as I had to zoom in as much as I could. Baby bear apparently decided that he'd best rejoin mama so he waited until Jake was back with me and then scooted down the tree and scampered off lickety-split.
Well, that’s one species of wildlife I’m glad we don’t have on the croft. I’m more than happy with our eagles, hawks, badgers, foxes, stoats, pine marten and the like, so I’ll leave the bears to you.
Incidentally, isn’t there a risk that mother bear will come charging back to protect baby bear?
Yes, there is some risk to that. But, black bears are not as, um, ferocious as, say, grizzlies (which I am glad to say we do not have here). With Jake making all his noise, and me at the top of the slope, she probably just went a short distance and waited. That’s why I kept calling Jake back up to me though, as I didn’t want him actually contacting the bear, not that he seemed to want to do that. And that gave baby time to get down and take off.
I’m hoping that the local bears will learn to avoid us eventually. There’s plenty of woods around us so that it’s not as if they have to come through our back yard!