A SPIRIT bear was recently spotted in Michigan for the first time in over fifteen years.
These white bears are described as a once-in-a-lifetime sight, and their recent appearance on camera in the forest is a hopeful symbol for conservationists.
This particular bear sighting was captured by a camera in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, according to Newsweek.
“It’s a sign of great change,” Austin Ayres told MLive.
Ayres is a wildlife technician at the Keweenaw Bay Indian Community Natural Resources Department in Michigan.
“Some stories have it that the bear only comes when it’s time for Anishinaabe to embrace her role and move away from her distractions,” he added of the animal’s symbolism in Native American culture.
He added, “It’s a reminder that anything and everything is possible in nature, and people shouldn’t look for something outside of nature, but understand that everything we need is within.”
The camera that caught the bear was installed in preparation for the state’s bear hunting season.
“I didn’t want anyone to shoot this bear,” the anonymous hunter who installed the camera told Mlive.
However, if the bear was unfortunately shot, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources said it would be helpful “to take a genetic sample and see if this is the exact same genetic mutation found in British Columbia’s outlying bear population.”
There are no legal penalties for Michigan hunters who shoot white bears.
According to the North American Bear Center, there are only about 100 spirit bears on the entire planet.
The spirit bear featured in the video is estimated to weigh around 100 pounds and is almost entirely white, with a light cinnamon hue around the head and neck.
Ghost bears “are not polar bears or albinos, despite their appearance.
They are actually a “subspecies of the black bears Kermode bears”.
These rare bears are natural island residents living almost exclusively on the Princess Royal and Gribell Islands off the coast of Canada’s British Columbia province, the North American Bear Center said.
Outside of this region, their stats drop to “one in a million.”
The last ghost bear sighting outside of British Columbia was in 2004.
Ayres said the sighting was special that “is a sign for all people. We all have the choice to desire more, to go further, to expand our understanding, or to slow down, to understand water more as spirit than chemical.”
https://www.the-sun.com/news/6272464/spirit-bear-spotted-mighigan-symbolic-message/ First sighting of one in a million white ghost bears in a US state