Cute trail cam video footage catches real bear playing with teddy bears

Close-up of black bear
(Image credit: Getty Images)

You don’t need to go down to the woods today to be in for a big bear-related surprise. Because the surprise was caught on camera and posted to YouTube.

The wonderful footage was captured on a trail cam located outside Red Lodge, Montana. It shows what happened when a black bear came across a couple of stuffed teddy bears in a wooded area – it snuggles down with them and starts to play.

Then a second bear comes along and joins in the fun, until the first guy leaves him  to it.

Bears playing with Teddy Bears outside of Red Lodge, Montana - YouTube Bears playing with Teddy Bears outside of Red Lodge, Montana - YouTube
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The video was posted by NBC Montana who don’t provide any context beyond: "Thanks to Don Redfoot for sending us this video of a couple of bears outside of Red Lodge having some fun with stuffed animals on a game cam."

But did some internet digging and found this article from Great Falls Tribune from a few years back, which reveals that Don Redfoot and his wife setup trail cameras in their backyard, and left out stuffed animals ( "a stuffed bright orange teddy bear and small lion") to see if real-life animals would interact with them as far back as 2020 at least. (Where this ranks when it comes to bear habituation, we’re not sure.)

“The toys have led to some unusual interactions that the cameras have captured,” says the article. “A bear playing and rolling atop the stuffed bear; a squirrel knocking the lion toy off a boulder in an odd king-of-the-mountain showdown; deer walking past as well as the backside of a mountain lion.”

But this footage posted by NBC is clearly date-stamped 2024, so we can only assume Don has never captured anything quite this great before and wanted to let the world see it.