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Wed Oct 7, 2020, 08:05 PM

Wide-bodied 747 crowned Alaska's fattest bear [View all]

ANCHORAGE (Reuters) - In Alaska’s annual battle of heavyweights, a salmon-chomping bruin named 747 – like the jetliner – has emerged as the most fabulously fat. The bear, one of more than 2,200 brown bears roaming Alaska’s Katmai National Park and Preserve, was victorious on Tuesday after a week of frenzied online voting in what has become an international sensation: Fat Bear Week.

Winner 747 was a worthy champion, the park said in a statement. “This year he really packed on the pounds, looking like he was fat enough to hibernate in July and yet continuing to eat until his belly seemed to drag along the ground by late September,” the park said.

Fat Bear Week pits 12 bears against each other in playoff-style brackets. Bear fans compared photos and voted online for their favorites from last Wednesday to Tuesday night.

Katmai’s bears can grow to well over 1,000 pounds (453 kg) from summer feasting. They can also lose a third of their body weight during hibernation. That makes Fat Bear Week about “survival of the fattest,” as the Park Service puts it. Katmai, a 4 million-acre park sprawling over mountains, lakes, streams and coastline, is famous for having the world’s densest population of brown bears, the coastal version of grizzlies.


Brown bear ‘747' stands in a river hunting for salmon to fatten up before hibernation at Katmai National Park and Preserve in Alaska.
U.S. September 20, 2020.
Courtesy of U.S. National Park Service/ Handout via REUTERS

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Reply Wide-bodied 747 crowned Alaska's fattest bear [View all]
left-of-center2012 Oct 2020 OP
uppityperson Oct 2020 #1
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