Other Animals

3 min read

“It appears that a bear has decided that he’s going to go shopping.”

Bears won’t think twice about breaking into a house or a car to get what they want — but it’s easier to use the automatic sliding door. 

That’s what the black bears around Lake Tahoe, California, have discovered on their quest to stock up on the human food before the weather gets cold.

A Safeway in Lake Tahoe has been visited twice in two weeks by hungry bears attracted by the smell of easy food.

Bear in grocery store
Twitter/Rubī Nevarez

The first visitor was caught on camera by fellow shopper Adina Baidoo on August 18. 

Baidoo was leaving the store with her cart when she almost ran into the large bear, she told KUTV. As the bear wandered back inside to grab a bag of chips, Baidoo whipped out her phone to capture the incident. 

“It appears that a bear has decided that he’s going to go shopping,” Baidoo says in the video. After exiting the grocery store, the bear stopped near the entrance to enjoy his stolen treat.

Days later, a bear was caught browsing the produce aisle near the avocados, before ultimately leaving with a plastic container of what looked like yogurt.

Lake Tahoe is home to upwards of 35,000 black bears and run-ins with local residents are common. People are encouraged to not leave out food — or anything with a scent — that may attract the bears. 

“Bears that seek human food have not forgotten how to forage naturally,” the National Parks Service writes on their website. “Human food simply has much more energy (fat, calories, etc.) than their natural foods so they can spend much less time foraging and pack on more pounds when eating human food.”

It’s clear that for at least one grocery shopping bear, packing on the pounds before winter won’t be a problem this year.

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