Video: Flock of ducks become accidental afternoon meal for Woodland Park Zoo bears

Apr 29, 2024, 12:57 PM | Updated: Apr 30, 2024, 1:46 pm

woodland park zoo bear...

Grizzly bears Juniper and Fern in their Woodland Park Zoo enclosure. (Photo courtesy of Woodland Park Zoo)

(Photo courtesy of Woodland Park Zoo)

The video below contains content that may be disturbing for some. Viewer discretion is advised.

A video posted on TikTok showed a flock of ducks landing in a brown bear enclosure at Woodland Park Zoo for a swim. Unfortunately for the ducks, the bears treated the surprise guests as an afternoon snack, grabbing and eating them as onlookers watched.

More on animals in Washington: Three zebras contained after escaping trailer on I-90 East, one missing

“While we know it can be difficult to watch, bears and other carnivores predating on chicks is a natural instinct and is indeed the circle of life,” Gigi Allianic, a senior manager of public relations and communications with the Woodland Park Zoo, told MyNorthwest.

According to the TikTok video, the incident occurred at Juniper and Fern’s enclosure. Juniper and Fern are two two-year-old female brown bears Woodland Park Zoo rescued. Juniper was found roaming alone near an Air Force base in Anchorage, Alaska whereas Fern is originally from Montana.

@hppytrees Edit: we see wildlife doing their thing all over where we live. Our kids are not “traumatized”. Oh and we also let them watch Dave Attenborough shows *gasp* A #natgeo trainwreck for my daughters birthday, thanks JUNIPER! JK we LOVED @Woodland Park Zoo #circleoflife #schnacks ♬ original sound – Rachelle

Despite the bears deciding to try duck, the pair generally eats a varied diet of fruit, vegetables, leafy greens and meat. According to the Woodland Park Zoo, Fern especially enjoys mixed nuts, meat and grapes while Juniper really loves fruit in general.

“Woodland Park Zoo is truly an urban oasis and naturally draws native wildlife to our grounds,” Allianic said. “Over the years, our animal care team has tried to discourage waterfowl from nesting in or near our habitats throughout the zoo, particularly where our carnivores live. However, free-flying ducks and birds can choose where to nest.”

The Woodland Park Zoo works with the Friends of the North Cascades Grizzly Bear Coalition, an organization that advocates for the restoration of a grizzly bear population in Washington.

“Grizzlies roamed over six million acres of North Cascades’ wildlands for centuries until they were hunted into regional extinction in the 1800s – they truly belong here,” Woodland Park Zoo said in a blog post. “Grizzlies contribute to a thriving ecosystem by aerating the soil and dispersing plant seeds – they are part of nature’s delicate balance. Washingtonians already know how to coexist with wildlife, including bears – bear safety and awareness will always be a top priority.

More on bringing grizzlies back: Grizzly bears to return to Washington despite opposition

“Bottom line: It’s time to bring them back,” the post continued.

Frank Sumrall is a content editor at MyNorthwest. You can read his stories here and you can email him here.

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