Where Do Bears Sleep in the Summer?

November 28, 2023

We’re all familiar with images of bears sleeping the winter away in their dens, but what about the spring, summer and fall months before they settle in for hibernation?

When a bear is not in hibernation, they usually sleep on the ground or anywhere that feels safe to them, such as a meadow or rock cave. They tend to follow a regular sleeping schedule and will often nap for up to 20 hours a day. This can vary depending on the season, location, and how much food they need to forage.

Once the first signs of spring arrive, bears are very active and busy foraging to reclaim their lost weight from the winter. Until mid-summer, a bear will usually only sleep during the darkest parts of the night or when they’re taking a midday break from foraging or exploring their surroundings.

As the days grow warmer, bears become more and more lazy as they start gaining their summertime body weight and settle into a pattern of waking during the day and sleeping at night. Unless they’re hungry or on the hunt for a mate, they tend to avoid long walks and instead take naps in shady areas or meadows.

In late summer, when the temperatures start to drop, bears will begin to shift their habits again. By the time autumn arrives, bears will be preparing for hibernation and will spend more than half of their waking hours looking for food in order to put on enough fat for the winter.

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