Types of Bears

Three species of bears live in North America: black bears, brown bears (which includes grizzlies), and polar bears. Check out the map of parks with bears to see where you can find the different species. While bears of the same species might look similar, everything from their size, coloring, diet and sleeping patterns depend on the bear and its location. For example, a bear’s diet varies depending on what foods are available during a specific season in a specific region. The species pages listed here explore some of these varying characteristics by profiling bears in different parks. For more information about bears and bear behavior in a specific national park, please contact that park.

Learn More About Bears

  • black bear
    Black Bears

    Did you know, despite their name, black bears can be black, cinnamon, blonde, blue/gray, or even white! Discover more about black bears.

  • A brown bear in a fall field
    Brown Bears

    Did you know brown bears (including grizzlies) have long curved claws for digging? Find out more about brown bears.

  • polar bear
    Polar Bears

    Did you know polar bears are the largest bears in North America? Learn more about polar bears.

Last updated: April 5, 2022


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