Where Does A Bear Shit?


Bear Shit in the Middle of the Road

There’s an old adage “Does a bear shit in the woods?” meaning “Of course!”. Well, this bear shit was in the middle of the road. I think it had been eating apples (obvious), berries, nuts, grass and deer. It needs to chew its food more before it swallows.

We saw another bear scat down by the high tension power lines where we were skidding cedar logs out for posts, also in the road. Our neighbor says the bear left her a similar present on her driveway when it came to claim its share of her corn. Perhaps this bear has a fetish for defecating in public places. Or maybe it is marking these areas as its territorial boundaries.

All of markings were in the area where I know a female bear lives. In fact it is the east side of what I believe is her territory. Further down the valley, up behind our house is a very large male bear. I suspect his den is just over the crest of the ridge from us. He and I respect each others privacy and don’t stick our heads in each other’s respective homes. Our dogs negotiated this treaty. Across the valley to the east beyond the marsh is another bear I’ve never met, just heard calling his hoots out in the evening. The three of them tend to each stay to their territory and just talk to each other. Our land happens to be at the intersection of three bear properties.

Outdoors: 67°F/48°F Sunny
Tiny Cottage: 67°F/67°F

Daily Spark: Does a bear shit in the woods? Not if the Agency of Natural Resources can help it!

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About Walter Jeffries

Tinker, Tailor…

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12 Responses to Where Does A Bear Shit?

  1. Marie says:

    Love it!
    Although, I’m glad I already finished my coffee – I might have spit it all over the keyboard, laughing. My Momma would (verbally) tan my hide if I used the word ‘shit’ in a post!
    So, have these bears been in the area for a long time, or are they recent arrivals?

  2. Michelle says:

    My answer would be “I think a bear shits wherever it wants to” Really, who’s going to stop it?

  3. Anon says:

    I love these sorts of little stories that show such texture to life where you are.

  4. Teresa says:

    And I think it’s interesting when I find an owl pellet on my deck!

  5. Guy Stuyt says:

    Here in British Columbia we have plenty of bruins as neighbors -Blacks and Grizzlies. Each fall they gorge on Mushrooms (mostly King Bolete) as well as the berries on our Mountain Ash / Rowan trees (Sorbus). If I could safely supplement my pigs diet with these two items then we might have a few less late night visitors to the farm and my dogs and I could sleep through the night on occasion.
    You think?

    Guy in British Columbia Canada

    • I have read of pigs eating mushrooms. If the bears are eating them then I would guess the pigs can also safely eat them but I’m not sure. We get a lot of mushrooms growing on the wood and from the soil in our pastures and woods and the pigs do appear to eat them.

  6. Maria says:

    Walter,
    speaking of bears and pigs– I have a great supply of bear fat, gleaned from local hunters who were going to throw it away. The chickens love it if the weather is cold– can I feed it to my pigs? I think I heard that bears and pigs share some diseases or parasites– should I cook it before feeding to the pigs?

    thanks, and thanks for your great website. I just got my first 2 pigs and have been spending many hours on your website, trying to learn as much as I can. what a great resource.

    • Bears often carry Trichinosis which can be transmitted to pigs and people. Cooking the meat kills the parasite. Legally, if you are selling the pork, you can’t feed meat in some states and in other states must cook it before feeding it to pigs who will be sold. If these are just for your own consumption I would definitely suggest cooking it. If you’re selling the pork then check the state laws where you reside. An online search should find the information discreetly. You can start at the USDA APHIS web page which has this nice chart:

      • Farmerbob1 says:

        I’m a wee bit confused by this map, Walter. It appears as if every state is represented, and every state is one of the two colors…

        But 20 states permit garbage feeding and 22 do not.

        When did we lose 8 states? I have a whole lot less respect for the USDA now, if whoever made this map doesn’t even know how to count, and failed to note the discrepancy.

        • It may be hard to read but their map shows 28 states in one category + 22 in the other category so that’s a total of 50 states. The ‘0’ you’re seeing is an ‘8’. Fortunately no states were lost in the making of that map. :)

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