• Stay calm. The noiser the bear, the less dangerous it is as long as you don’t approach it.

• Don’t climb a tree or swim because bears are better at it than you. Don’t kneel. Don’t make direct eye contact.

• Back away slowly, keeping the bear in sight. Wait for it to leave.

• If the bear stays, wave your arms, make noise, throw objects.

• If you can, get to a building or car.


Warning signs

• Black bear attacks are extremely rare.

• A black bear that stands on its hind legs isn’t being aggressive — it’s trying to get a better look and catch your scent.

• A bear that feels threatened will salivate excessively, exhale loudly and make huffing, moaning, clacking and popping sounds with its mouth, teeth and jaws. It will lower it’s head with its ears drawn back while facing you. It will make a bluff charge and/or swat the ground.

• A predatory bear will approach silently. Yelling and throwing things won’t deter it. Use bear spray, if you have it. Fight with everything you have. Don’t play dead unless you are sure a mother bear is attacking in defense of her cubs.


Source: Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry.