What happens when a bear eats too much people food? Apparently, he plumps up and gets fat just like the rest of us.
Residents in South Lake Tahoe, California, have recently had to contend with a bear they’ve nicknamed Hank the Tank–partly for the bear’s enormous size, and partly because of the way he prefers to make an entrance. Largely due to his diet of pilfered people food, Hank has ballooned to a massive size of 500 pounds, and is now so hefty he can just crash right through doors and windows, making his own entry way when none is provided.
On the bright side, the gluttonous bear hasn’t shown any signs of aggression toward people. Unlucky residents who have stumbled upon the intruder say he doesn’t growl or behave in a menacing way, but “just sits there and eats,” says Ann Bryant of the Bear League. I guess that’s the secret to entertaining a large predatory beast with sharp teeth: Be sure to keep your houseguest well fed.
Here’s a thought: Maybe we humans could start stocking our houses with healthier food. then neither we nor the bears would wind up so bloated. I’ve never seen a bear break into a house to scavenge a salad.
1. The Week, March 11, 2022, p. 13