Black Bear Nonchalantly Joins Family For Picnic Of Peanut Butter Sandwiches

When you think of humans interacting with friendly bears, images that come to mind are usually family-friendly television shows and cartoons. Bears have a reputation for being dangerous. After all, they are wild animals.

A black bear joined a family for a picnic this August, and it didn't happen on TV. The scenario played out in real-life when a family decided to eat some peanut butter sandwiches in the open in Deep Creek, Maryland, as this recent video from Kaitlyn Nesbit shows. The black bear then decided to join them for a quick bite.

Be sure to reach the end of this article to see the full video :-)

The family decided to eat at a picnic table in Deep Creek, Maryland cabin when the bear came out of hiding, as the New York Post reports. The woodland creature likely smelled the peanut butter and wanted to eat some.

One man held out a peanut butter sandwich to the bear, and the animal quickly took it. The bear knew what it was after. Luckily for the picnicking family, the bear was after some food and not them.
The family had some familiarity with the bear, as people spotted the creature roaming near the cabins now and then. Likely, the bear became used to people over the years. Boldly approaching a group of humans, however, is not something the average bear will do. And the average family probably wouldn't be so casual about such a large predator's presence.

The skeptical might think the photos of the family and the bear are altered. A bit of additional proof exists. The images don't come from a still camera. They are screen captures from a brief video, which you can watch below. Nothing appears choreographed or staged. And you can hear onlookers in the background expressing shock.

Those not familiar with black bears may wonder how the animal felt so comfortable approaching humans. Black bears, unlike grizzly bears, have found ways to survive in areas where cities and towns replaced large sections of forest. These bears can hide out of human sight and feed out of garbage cans, as The Humane Society reports. Sometimes, they break into people's homes and outright raid refrigerators.

Maryland officials were not likely amused. Under Maryland law, feeding wild bears is an illegal act. Good reasons exist for this law. Getting too close to a bear is extremely dangerous. Also, bears could get the idea that people will always provide food, leading the creatures to continue to approach humans. And that may put both humans and bears' lives at risk.

The Maryland Department of Natural Resources suggests people try to scare black bears away when the beasts come too close. Yelling, screaming, and banging pots and pans fall under the "suggestions list." Noise may scare the bear away, and that is the best outcome. Getting the bear far away from people as possible while discouraging future encroachments.

The family in the video are lucky. Someone could have suffered a severe injury or worse. Interacting with wild animals, especially bears, is not recommended. No one knows how a wild animal may react, and people have suffered injuries attempting to feed them. So, while the video has a whimsical nature, viewers might not wish to use it for inspiration.

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