Now that the weather is warming up, bear sightings are becoming more common. While it's not unusual to see one or two during the warmer months in B.C., it's out of the ordinary to see a mother bear with five cubs. This is exactly what happened last week in Penticton and a resident even snapped a photo.
Bears are beginning to wake up their hungry bodies from their long hibernations.
They're now taking to the wild to look for food for both themselves and their cubs. Though of course, they often end up right near civilization and people often capture those instances on camera.
Typically, you'll encounter a black bear with one, possibly two, cubs. But one mama in Penticton has her paws a little full as she has five hungry babies to care for (four were captured by the photo).
Narcity spoke with WildSafeBC employee Zoe Kirk about this sighting.
According to Kirk, it's "exceedingly unusual” for a mother bear to have this many cubs. Most of the time, not all babies survive.
In the photo, you can see the female out for a walk in the Upper Evergreen Drive area of Wiltse, most likely looking for food.
The cubs are adorable and four can be seen circling their mama.
Penticton locals are no strangers to sightings but this was a little odd even for bear country.
Kirk believes that the reason this picture has gone so viral is that it's rare to see one of these creatures with so many cubs.
Right now, everyone in the area is being asked to take extra precautions as she's trying to feed her family.
Since adults can eat up to 20,000 calories a day, she has quite the food quota to fill.
Residents are being asked to use extra precautions when taking out the garbage and leaving out anything that may act as an attractant.
Fatal black bear attacks are rare, reportedly occurring less than once a year across North America.
Even though they may not be the deadliest in the world, everyone should still be doing their part so they have no reason to wander into town.
The WildSafeBC expert did note that charges and attacks can still happen if bears get too used to human behaviour.