(CNN)— Finally, it is Fat Bear Week-the most popular week for healthy competition among brown bears.
The Katmai National Park and Preserve in Alaska calls it the “Celebration of Success”. This is a March Madness-style tournament with a stand where you can vote for the heaviest brown bear.
The bears are preparing to return to their dens during the winter, and there will be no food or drink until spring. When their weight is reduced by as much as one-third, their fat reserves can sustain their lives.
“For bears, fat equals survival,” Katmai’s website says.
According to the National Park Service, the game can be traced back to Fat Bear Tuesday in 2014, and an event with 640,000 votes was held in 2020. This year is a shout for the fun of Fat Bear.
The dominant adult male may catch and eat more than 30 fish every day, and by the end of the fall, the adult male can weigh more than 1,000 pounds (454 kg).
About 2,200 brown bears live in the park.
The National Park Service stated that the area where the park is located “has more brown bears than humans, and the largest and healthiest sockeye salmon on the planet”.
Fat Bear Week starts on Wednesday, September 29 and ends on Tuesday, October 5.
Photo courtesy of the National Park Service