Bear Facts

This past month, Colorado has witnessed an unprecedented migration of bears into urban areas -- a veritable ursineapalooza as bears rummage through suburban backyards, fish in wading pools and slurp through Pepsi-Cola plants. "People are encroaching on bear habitat," the DOW's Scott Hoover told NBC on Sunday. "They are going to find the food, no matter what."

But because a bear needs to store 20,000 calories each day in preparation for that six-month nap, a backyard barbecue or suburban dumpster often fails to satisfy. Sometimes a bear needs to venture into an area renowned for its eating and drinking opportunities. And so, while the rest of the media was chasing bear sightings down by Bear Creek Park (how obvious), Westword was able to capture (on film) a brown bear trolling for grub in the heart of downtown Denver.

Despite Hoover's dire warning that "a fed bear is a dead bear," this visitor, a 180-pound male, enjoyed making the rounds in LoDo, grooming and consuming, until his foray was called to an abrupt halt by Denver police, who collared the miscreant after he relieved himself. But in the process, we got the answer to an age-old question: Does a bear shit in the 'hoods?

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