Featured Wildlife: Brown Bear

Kootz-brown-bear-US-Forest-Service-Reg-10Average life span: 25 years in the wild

Height (four legs): 3.5 feet (Alaska Kodiak up to 5 feet)

Height (two legs): 6-7 feet (Alaska Kodiak up to 10 feet)

Weight: 300-850 lbs. males, 200-450 lbs. females; Alaska Kodiak bears can weigh more than 1,000 lbs.

Brown Bear versus Grizzly Bear: So which term is correct? The answer is: all grizzlies are brown bears, but not all brown bears are grizzlies. The grizzly is a North American subspecies of brown bear. Although the correct scientific name for a grizzly is “brown bear,” only coastal bears in Alaska and Canada are generally referred to as brown bears, while inland and Arctic bears and those found in the Lower 48 are called grizzly bears.

Product of Alaska: Brown bears are more numerous in the state of Alaska than anywhere else in America. There are an estimated 30,000 bears there, about 95% of the entire population in the United States. Kootznoowoo Wilderness, located within the Admiralty Island National Monument in the Tongass National Forest, gets its name from the indigenous people of southeast Alaska, the Tlingit.

Kootznoowoo means “Bear Fort” or “Fortress of the Bears,” and its forests contain the highest concentration of brown bears in the world.