Imagine raising an orphaned bear cub, carefully reintroducing her to the wild, then being welcomed back, almost daily, to observe her wild world for more than 17 years. Imagine visiting her in her feeding spots, watching her with her mates and her young, peering into her den, and, over time, observing the lives of all the other wild bears in her territory and surrounding ones. That is what happened to Ben Kilham, whose long-term study of wild black bears has shattered conventional wisdom about how they live their lives. In the Company of Bears unveils Kilham's groundbreaking work. Like others, he once thought that black bears were solitary. But he discovered that they actually have extraordinary communication and interaction with each other - creating and enforcing codes of conduct, forming alliances, and even sharing territory and food when supplies are ample. In the Company of Bears (originally released in hardcover as Out on a Limb) is more than a story about bears. It's the story of a scientist once kept from a traditional science career by his dyslexia, only to find that thinking and seeing differently was his greatest gift and his best tool to interpret the non-human world.
What members say
What did you love best about In the Company of Bears?
I learned so much about bears. They are inspiring creatures and the complex relationships (between the bears and between the author and bears) were a huge surprise. I love wildlife and animal behavioral books, so this book was an easy sell for me. However I think anyone would enjoy this book. This book is written in a nice light, easy to ready style with a strong story of the author throughout. That keeps the book from being too fact heavy/hard to read. The book really is a story book with some scientific tid-bits thrown in.
Who was your favorite character and why?
Squirty the Bear.
What does George Backman bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
The narration is easy to listen to.
- MRS JULIE A FLETCHER
I loved it. Very interesting to learn about the bears & the research he's done. Wonderful insight into his life so far.