Human food is not always attractive to the animals, and some of them are not good for them like chocolate for dogs. But, it seems that the beverages we drink can be very attractive for some animals. The campers at the Swift Creek Campground (formerly Baker Lake Resort) witnessed that in the case of beer.
The Swift Creek Campground is located about half-way up Baker Lake, and there is plenty of wildlife. The campers can use the site for the day, but there are also overnight camping facilities.
The campers had their day in the woods and left the campground with their food supplies among which was a large stash of Rainier and Busch beers in a cooler. They planned to have a nice bonfire and relax after the hiking, swimming or whatever activity they have chosen it for the day. But, to their biggest surprise the beer was gone when they returned to the campground and in the middle of the empty cans there was a black bear. They bear seemed to have passed out on the lawn of the campground.
This bear was probably wandering near the campground and snoozed around looking for food, but what brought her interest were the cans of beers. Although the cans are not easy to open considering that we are talking about an animal, the bear was persistent and opened several cans and drank them all. In fact, it drank 3-dozen cans of Rainier beer having a great party by itself. So, no wondering that it passed out right there in the middle of the lawn.
Bears’ Beer Preference
The most interesting part about this bear party was that the bear preferred more the cans of
Rainier and rejected the Busch. This did not happen by chance as the bear managed to open a can of Busch which was found in the mess that it produced, but obviously did not fancy it a lot and opt only for the cans of Rainier.
Alcohol is alcohol no matter who drinks it, a human or animal and after couple of cans of beer the bear could not hold himself anymore and eventually passed away, just like a human would. The agents of the Department of Fish and Wildlife could not believe with what they have to deal with. They were for sure not prepared for such event, a massive drunk bear.
The agents evaluated the site and figured the bear got into the camper’s coolers and used his sharp teeth and claws to puncture the cans. Plus, there was a clear evidence of that, a trail of cans leading back to the campsite. The whole site showed that the bear was drinking the beer of the campers and the obvious evidence was there, a drunken bear sleeping in the middle of the mess.
One of the agents at the site tried to chase the bear away from the campsite, but it was no use as the bear was just too drunk. However, after a while the bear managed to climb a tree and there slept for 4 hours. When the hangover of the bear passed the agents managed to get him away from the campground, and you would thought that this story is over, but it wasn’t the bear returned to the campsite again for more beer.
Therefore, the wildlife agents had to become creative and find a way how to capture this beer-driven bear and relocate it away from the campsite. So, they placed honey, doughnuts, and naturally open cans of Rainier as bait.
One of the agents, Bill Heinck, the Fish and Wildlife Enforcement sergeant said the following:
“This is a new one on me. I’ve known them to get into cans, but nothing like this. And it definitely had a preference.”
The interesting part about this incident was the preference of Rainier beers, and not the Busch. For the P.R. of Busch this would be the biggest nightmare even the animals prefer other beer than theirs.
What drives the bear to drink beer?
This is a valid question since it is not the first case for bears to break into people’s places and drink beer. One such case was in Norway where a family of bears broke into the holiday cabin of Even Borthen Nilsen through the cabin’s windows. The family had quite a large supply of cans of beers, more than a hundred which were all drunken by the bears. After they drank all the bear, naturally like any drunken person or in this case animals they needed food so they ate all the available food in the kitchen and smashed up the furniture in the cabin.
It seems that human alcoholic beverages like beer have become attractive to the animals taking up some of the bad human behavior. There was a case of wild pig drinking the beer of Australian campers having a piggy night out, but that is another story.