A bear at the Alaskan reserve who identified as bear 747, has taken the price of this year’s Fat Bear Week champion. In a joint initiative by Katmai National Park and Explore.org, the team reached out to the public to vote on which bear they think has gained the most weight prior to hibernation season. They shared a photo of each bear before the weigh gain and after. In the final duel of this March Madness-style bracket, 747 defeated the runner-up and was described as “very fat with a low-hanging belly and uniformly dark brown fur.”
However, gearing up the best for hibernation season doesn’t come new to bear 747. The cubby champion has taken the crown back in 2020 weighing nearly one ton.
Mike Fitz, a former ranger and the founder of Fat Bear Week, endorsed 747 because of his beauty and added, “He is the largest bear I've ever seen. He’s always super fat in the fall, and he’s just a great bear to watch…a tough competitor, one of the more dominant bears at the waterfall.”
This healthy bear hopefully will shine a light on how important the perfect balance of habitat are for these giant beasts. “For bears, fat equals survival. Fat bears exemplify the richness of this area, a wild region that is home to more brown bears than people and the largest, healthiest runs off sockeye salmon left on the planet.”