A Bear Just Joined Beachgoers for a Swim in This Popular Florida Town


WanderDrone/Getty Images

Nothing says summer like a day at the beach — and one black bear in Florida definitely agrees.

The bear was spotted splashing in the Gulf of Mexico surf at a crowded beach in Destin, Florida on Sunday, according to a report by local TV station WMBB.

Footage captured by beachgoers shows the bear swimming through the water before reaching the sand and scampering off. (According to The Guardian, bears are typically good swimmers.)

“We had been watching him [for] several minutes come in from out pretty far,“ one beachgoer told CNN. “Most people didn’t realize it was a bear … the crowd was in shock.”

Another witness had been on a boat returning from scuba diving when she saw the animal galavanting in the water. “We couldn’t tell what it was so we turned the boat to get closer and that’s when we realized it was a bear,” she told CNN. “I guess he’s on vacation too.” 

This isn’t the first time a bear has been seen in Florida this month. On June 4, onlookers spotted a bear about 50 feet high in a tree at Lake Eola Park in Orlando, Florida’s WESH 2 News reported.

Black bears can be found throughout Florida and are the only bears species in the state, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. They’ve also been increasing in numbers with biologists estimating there are more than 4,000 black bears in Florida.

The commission warns it is illegal to feed bears. It advises that if people come into close contact with a bear, they should stand upright; speak to the bear in a calm, assertive voice while avoiding direct eye contact; back up slowly; and leave the bear a clear escape route.

+ There are no comments

Add yours