Vision: Bears see in color and have good close-up vision. Distance vision (over 200 yards) untested.

Hearing: Exceeds human frequency ranges and is probably twice the sensitivity.

Smelling: Smelling ability extremely good. Limits untested. Their nasal mucosa area is about 100 times larger than in humans.


Black bear swimming

Intelligence: One of the more intelligent mammals. Navigation ability superior to humans. Excellent long-term memory. Can generalize to the simple concept level. Large brain compared to body size.

Running Speed: Lean bears can exceed 30 mph. Can run uphill, downhill, or on level ground. Fat bears with winter coats overheat and tire quickly.

Swimming Ability: Can swim at least 1.5 miles in fresh water. One swam more than 9 miles in the Gulf of Mexico. Speed and distance limits untested. Can swim to island campsites.



Basic Bear Facts (article list)