Quotes about Bears
"When a pine needle falls in the forest, the eagle sees it; the deer hears it, and the bear smells it."
- an old First Nations saying
"Bears are not companions of men, but children of God, and His charity is broad enough for both... We seek to establish a narrow line between ourselves and the feathery zeros we dare to call angels, but ask a partition barrier of infinite width to show the rest of creation its proper place. Yet bears are made of the same dust as we, and breathe the same winds and drink of the same waters. A bears days are warmed by the same sun, his dwellings are overdomed by the same blue sky, and his life turns and ebbs with heart-pulsings like ours and was poured from the same fountain....."
- John Muir
"The greatest thrill is not to kill but to let live"
James Oliver Curwood (from the "Grizzly King")
"Those who have packed far up into grizzly country know that the presence of even one grizzly on the land elevates the mountains, deepens the canyons, chills the winds, brightens the stars, darkens the forest, and quickens the pulse of all who enter it. They know that when a bear dies, something sacred in every living thing interconnected with that realm... also dies."
- John Murray
"The mountains have always been here, and in them, the bears."
- Rick Bass (in The Lost Grizzlies, page 97)
"Relegating grizzlies to Alaska is about like relegating happiness to heaven; one may never get there".
- Aldo Leopold (in "A Sand County Almanac", 1948)
"If the human race is to survive, then we must respect the rights of other species to survive. Sharing bedroom space with a grizzly bear is not practical but sharing wilderness space is. We must therefore, restrict human activity in spaces where threatened or endangered species live. We must stay out of their bedroom. Set aside some wild spaces while they yet exist. Closing the wild spaces after all of the wild things are gone will not work."
- Bob McMeans (member, Virginia Outdoors Writers Association)
"It would be fitting, I think, if among the last manmade tracks on earth would be found the huge footprints of the great brown bear."
- Earl Fleming (American naturalist, 1958)
"When all the dangerous cliffs are fenced off, all the trees that might fall on people are cut down, all of the insects that bite have been poisoned ... and all of the grizzlies are dead because they are occasionally dangerous, the wilderness will not be made safe. Rather, the safety will have destroyed the wilderness."
- R. Yorke Edwards (Canadian environmentalist)
"What we seem to want is a statistically homogenized picture of a species, when we really need to look at bears as dynamic, living mechanisms."
- Dr. Barrie Gilbert
"Bears keep me humble. They help me to keep the world in perspective and to understand where I fit on the spectrum of life. We need to preserve the wilderness and its monarchs for ourselves, and for the dreams of children. We should fight for these things as if our life depended upon it, because it does."
- Wayne Lynch ("Bears: Monarchs of the Northern Wilderness", 1993)
"The grizzly is a symbol of what is right with the world."
- Charles Jonkel, American bear biologist
"Alive, the grizzly is a symbol of freedom and understanding - a sign that man can learn to conserve what is left of the earth. Extinct, it will be another fading testimony to things man should have learned more about but was too preoccupied with himself to notice. In its beleaguered condition, it is above all a symbol of what man is doing to the entire planet. If we can learn from these experiences, and learn rationally, both grizzly and man may have a chance to survive."
- Frank Craighead ("Track of the Grizzly", 1979)
"The rule about bears is their unpredictability."
"The fate of bears in many areas of the world will be decided in the next 10-20 years. The future of several species is in serious doubt. The elimination of bears from 50-75 percent of their historic range has already occurred and the remaining range will decrease unless serious efforts are focused on bear conservation."
- Dr. Chris Servheen, biologist (1990 Report on the Status of Bears)
"Up there on Huckleberry Mountain, I couldn't sleep ... As the sky broke light over the peaks of Glacier, I found myself deeply moved by the view from our elevation - off west the lights of Montana, Hungry Horse, and Columbia Falls, and farmsteads along the northern edge of Flathead Lake, and back in the direction of sunrise the soft and misted valleys of the parklands, not an electric light showing: little enough to preserve for the wanderings of a great and sacred animal who can teach us, if nothing else, by his power and his dilemma, a little common humility."
- William Kittredge ("Grizzly"]