No this is not a cub but rather an adult grizzly bear sitting in sedge grass. The grass in the estuary of Knight Inlet’s Glendale River is better than a meter (3 feet) high. In the spring bears come to this area to feed on the sedge grass is it up to 25% protein and as the berries in the coastal forests are not yet available this is the reason why grizzly bears are in the estuary. At lower tides when more of the beach is exposed the bears will spent more time turning over rocks in the inter-tidal zone looking for food high in protein such as crab, clams, barnacles, amphipods and other tiny invertebrates. Much a grizzly’s time in the spring is spent in search of food this changes in the fall once the salmon arrive and food is more abundant. Photo by guest Debbie Zygmunt.
The last 3 years we have been starting to view sea otters in our area more regularly. They are still often a distance away, but the sightings are increasing with some “rafts” of them developing in areas near the western portion of our whale watching trips. These animals were hunted heavily for their fur and were completely wiped out of British Columbia waters. Re-introduction occurred from Alaskan otters in the 1960’s. They have long been protected and their numbers have been steadily increasing along the exposed BC coast and are now moving back into inside waters. They are unique in that they don’t have the insulating blubber that other marine mammals use to keep warm. As a result they have dense (over 1 million hairs per square inch) fur and feed heavily. They are important in balancing the eco-system. They eat a lot of sea urchins, which eat a lot of kelp. Kelp is extremely important as it provides cover for juvenile fish and is where the herring spawn in the early spring. With the increase in these otters we are seeing a greater abundance and healthier kelp forests.Visit our Blog