For decades bear biologists have known that bears engage in a delightful ramble variously dubbed “sumo strutting,” “cowboy walking” or, simply, the “bear dance.” Many researchers have guessed at the reason, but a recent study finally offers solid clues. As they walk, the bears vigorously twist their feet into the ground. Sometimes they step into footprints left behind by other bears after giving the prints a good sniff. Some have referred to these collective tracks as bear highways because they become well traveled over time.
A subscription may be required to read the complete article.