Video of bear swimming among hundreds of fish on B.C. coast goes viral
A viral video of a grizzly bear hunting salmon on B.C.’s south coast is giving new meaning to the phrase “shooting fish in a barrel.”
But in this case, it’s pawing fish in a river.
The clip, posted by Knight Inlet Lodge, features a grizzly bear surrounded by hundreds of pink salmon in Glendale Cove, an area known for having some of the highest concentrations of brown bears in B.C.
The bear appears to be in fish heaven as it waits for salmon to surround it before diving in and chomping down on dinner.
“This time of year, when the salmon are in the river and in the pools, that’s what makes it so exciting for us and our clients,” said lodge owner Dean Wyatt. “We have a concentrated number of fish and all these bears that are coming to eat them.”
Much to Wyatt’s surprise, the video has been seen an eye-popping 1.7-million times on Facebook, with nearly 32,000 shares as of Tuesday afternoon.
“I don’t understand the social media phenomenon, and it’s kind of mind-boggling to say the least,” said Wyatt. “We’ve had a couple of outlets in the U.K. that have contacted us, three in America wanting to use the images, wanting to know if we have other images available.”
It’s even more popular than a video the resort posted in 2014 of a curious grizzly chowing down on a Go Pro camera.
Wyatt said he has a theory as to why the internet fawns over videos of the fearsome predators.
“I think that it goes back to when people are young – it goes back to a teddy bear,” he said. “I think it’s as simple as that for a lot of people.”
The latest viral video is great news for Wyatt, who had to rebuild his business after it was destroyed by fire in September 2012.
“We have rebounded fully from the fire. We’re at business levels where we’ve never been at before. Interestingly enough, last year we went past our 30,000th visitor,” he said.
Wyatt said there’s “no question” that the video of the bear going viral will draw more attention to Knight Inlet and Glendale Cove, but it’s too early to tell whether that will translate into business.
Even if it does, prospective bear-watchers will have to make plans far in advance to go one on of the lodge’s tour packages. The resort is already sold out for its peak season in 2017.