Grizzly Bear Cub Using a Tool

brown bear boar cub in AlaskaOne afternoon I observed this grizzly bear cub using a small stone to scratch his belly.  Tool use, such as chimpanzees dipping blades of grass into termite mounds, has long been considered a hallmark of higher intelligence in animals.  This bear cub, not even a year old, was using a rock as a scratching tool.  It is my belief that brown bears are one of the most intelligent mammals in North America, and that they share many mental faculties observed in primates.

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