Bears on the menu

I don’t know how many of you have seen a bear paw imprint in the forest. I have–ever so often…they are like a human’s. Smaller. Childlike.
It’s such a thrill (and a bit scary–bears are unpredictable. I understand there sense of vision and hearing is poor, so they panic when they stumble on you–invaders in their terrain, the forest, and hence may attack) to know walk in the forest,knowing that there are bears around. In fact if they freBearPawssh prints are anything to go by–the bears are quite close..
This seizure was of over 200 bear paws, 213 to be precise (in China reportedly in transit from Russia) of  adults, and of cubs. Killed so that we could eat those paws–and acquire their strength and vigour. And because we love their taste. People will eat anything, kill anything, then have the temerity to call the animals (we are one too) ‘beasts’, dangerous…
I came across bear (Himalayan black bear) once in the beautiful forests of Dachigam Valley. She had a tiny cub, hitching a ride on her back.

We were walking down the forest path, and we surprised each other at a turn. She started–and the cub riding on her (incredibly cute, very Teddy) was in the next instant lifted, and safely tucked behind her. The mother’s first thought was to protect her cub. He/she was curious and tried to peek from behind her legs, but one whack from mom, had the kid in place.
Then she turned to us–stood on her two legs, ‘paws spread wide..she made herself bigger. We stood our ground quietly…heart in our mouths. Hearts stopping,. Racing.
We knew she had the strength, the power to harm us.
But after a stern warning  in the form of a growl, she swiftly picked her cub, and vanished into the forest.
Animals don’t want to harm us..even as we wreck havoc to their world, and them. They don’t want anything to do with us.
They want to be left alone. And they want a home.
The forest..which keeps them-and us alive.

We humans need to respechimalayan black bear-dhritimant that.

When i saw this news item, i remembered the mother bear and her cub, and I feel that while she spared me, I have not spared her kind.

 

(Thanks Dhritiman Mukherjee, for the use of this photograph)

One Response to “Bears on the menu

  • Its tragic as it is alarming. hope there is redemption.

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