GATLINBURG, Tenn. — Why did the bear cross the road? To ensure her cubs made it safely.
According to 10 News, there have been multiple sightings of a bear family, or multiple families, exploring Cades Cove in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which is located in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.
Last week, Cades Cove-Faye Sykes Photography shared video on Facebook of a bear family attempting to cross a wet road in the park. Mama bear is seen leading the way. Two of her four cubs made it quickly across the pavement, however the other two needed some coaxing.
On Thursday another park visitor, Rebecca Connell, also captured a bear crossing in Cades Cove. She shared the video on Facebook.
Then, on Friday, 10 News shared a new video, provided by Molly Matchette, of a mama bear and her four cubs trying to cross a road in the same area.
A representative from the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA) told the news outlet that it’s not uncommon for healthy bears to have four cubs at once, however it is unusual that all four would have survived this long.
“Life is dangerous for the little guys out in the wild, so she must be a pretty good mother,” Matt Cameron from the TWRA reportedly said.
It is unknown if the mother and cubs spotted in these videos are the same family, but officials allegedly said it could be.
However, the news outlet said officials have issued a reminder as people continue to visit the park this spring.
“The mothers and cubs are on the move right now. Those cubs are just about three to four pounds and are easily distracted, so moms got a very busy job. If you are driving through the park, in bear country, be careful. Just because you see mom and one or two cubs cross the road, there might be more,”Janet Dalton, Assistant Curator of the Appalachian Bear Rescue, told 10 News.