Bear Cub Goes Grocery Shopping in Ketchikan, Alaska

If a wild animal was expected to be scrounging around the produce aisle in a grocery store, one might expect to see a rabbit in the carrots, a groundhog munching on radishes, or even a raccoon peeling off the husks of corn cobs. But at an IGA supermarket in Ketchikan, Alaska, a young bear cub was spotted climbing among the produce on Saturday, October 15th. A video shows a crowd of onlookers, including animal rescue and policemen who were giving the bear enough space to seek what he wanted before they could safely catch the cub and return it to the wild. The big question is, exactly how did the cub wind up in the store to begin with? Was the cub hungry and got separated from its mother somehow? And if it was, would the mother have come into the grocery store to rescue her cub? That would have been quite a spectacle, not to mention the difficulty of getting two bears out of a grocery store. A cub can easily be picked up and removed, but an adult bear would frighten people for sure, even causing them to run out of the store.

Since the cub was actually trying to hide from the shoppers in the produce, if it really decided to go shopping, he might also be seen in the meat aisle as well as the produce aisle, since bears are omnivores. So after stocking up on potatoes, carrots, leafy greens, apples, and celery, he would be pushing his cart over to the meat aisle. Bears are picky and like their meat fresh, so he will probably stop by the deli for some cold cuts of turkey, roast beef, and even ham. Being young, the cub may even stop by the bakery for something sweet, such a snickerdoodles or a pie. The cub may even stop by the aisle that has potato chips and peanuts, so that it can have a snack before bed time.

Hopefully the cub has found its way home by now, safe near its mother. No doubt the mother bear was worried about her cub wandering off into town, but in a state like Alaska, humans and wildlife are more likely to have close encounters with each other, even if it is in the produce aisle of an IGA store.

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