Oktoberfest – Do Bears Drink Beers?

Bear, Oktoberfest, beer, German beer, Oktoberfest bear

As one might expect, the predominate fluid consumption for almost all bears comes from drinking water. Polar bears are the exception. Logically, one would assume a polar bear would enjoy a nice cold drink of ice water, or eat snow or ice. Quite the contrary. Polar bears do not drink water, and do not eat snow or ice. Instead Polar bears obtain an adequate water intake by extracting it from the chemical breakdown of fat in their high fat diet.

What do bears think of beers, rather than just drinking water? Well, in 2004 NBC news reported the account of a beer drinking black bear at the Baker Lake Resort in Baker Lake Washington. Allegedly the bear raided some camper’s coolers filled with both Rainier and Busch Beer. The bear was found enjoying an intoxicated slumber in a nearby tree after having imbibed 36 cans of Rainier Beer. Only one can of Busch Beer appeared to have been tasted, while the rest had been ignored. Apparently this beer drinking bear, like most beer drinkers, preferred one beer over another. Of note, no campers were injured and the bear was lured away and relocated using donuts with honey and two cans of Rainier Beer.

A similar occurrence, was documented in 2012 by the Huff Post occurring near the town of Jarfjord Norway. A European Brown Bear and her three cubs made their way into a cabin where they subsequently drank 100 cans of beer. Apparently European Bears start drinking beer earlier than North American Bears. While it should be reassuring to all beer drinking campers, no bear attack has ever been documented to have been caused by a beer drinking bear, it would nevertheless be prudent to store your bear in a cooler locked in a car, truck, RV, or trailer.