Significance to humans

Various bears are hunted for meat, fur, and trophy mounts. In addition, body parts, such as the gall bladder of sun and American black bears, are also harvested for medicinal purposes, particularly in China. Bears have also become important as attractions at zoos.

While many bears are assumed to be dangerous to humans, bear attacks are few and fatalities are rare.

1. Spectacled bear (Tremarctos ornatus); 2. Giant panda (Ailuropoda melanoleuca); 3. Brown bear (Ursus arctos); 4. American black bear (Ursus americanus); 5. Polar bear (Ursus maritimus). (Illustration by John Megahan)

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