1. The Kodiak, which is native to Alaska, is the largest bear and can measure up to eight feet and weigh as much as 1,700 pounds
2. There are only eight living species of bears and they can be found throughout most of the world.
3. The sloth bear has the shaggiest fur. The sun bear has the shortest fur so it can keep cool in the hot forests of Southeast Asia.
4. Even though bears are big and heavy, they can run very fast and are also good at climbing and swimming.
5. Bears have two layers of fur. A short layer of fur keeps the bear warm. And a long layer keeps water away from the skin and short fur.
6. Bears have a large brain and are one of the more intelligent mammals.
7. Bears take a long sleep in the winter similar to hibernation. They will sleep in their dens and a mother bear will also have her cubs in a den.
8. Bears are very smart and have been known to roll rocks into bear traps to set off the trap and eat the bait in safety.
9. Bear cubs are born in litters of 1 to 3 and usually stay with their mothers for about 3 years. Most bears live alone except when a female has cubs. A mother bear will defend her cubs ferociously if they are threatened.
10. Bears live as long as 30 years in the wild. One captive brown bear lived to the age of 47.
11. Polar bears and grizzly bears can be dangerous to people, especially when they are sharing a habitat, but for the most part, bears are shy and are easily frightened of humans.
12. Bears are bowlegged. This gives them better grip and balance.
13. Unlike many mammals,bears can see in color.
14. Bears can run up to 40 miles per hour, fast enough to catch a running horse. The fastest known human alive today is Usain Bolt, who can run 27mph.
15. The giant panda is actually a bear.
16. Sun bears have the longest claws of any bear. They also have the longest tongues, which can reach 9.8″ long.
17. Bears have an excellent sense of smell, better than dogs or possibly any other mammal.
18. A bear’s normal heartbeat is 40 beats per minute. A hibernating bear’s heart rate drops to 8 bpm.
19. All polar bears alive today can trace their ancestry back to one female brown bear who lived in Ireland 50,000 years ago.
20. Black bears are not always black. They come in a rainbow of colors from black to reddish brown (cinnamon bears) to light brown to white.
21. A group of bears is called a sloth.
22. A polar bear’s stomach can hold 150 lbs. (68 kg) of meat.
23. A swimming polar bear can jump 8 ft. (2.4 m) out of the water to surprise a seal.
24. Koala bears are not bears at all and are not related to the bear family. They are marsupials.
25. If you eat a polar bear liver, you’ll die. Humans can’t handle that much vitamin A.