Oregon Zoo black bears helping researchers with walking study - KPTV - FOX 12

Oregon Zoo black bears helping researchers with walking study

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Takoda, an American black bear, kicks back on a rock at the Oregon Zoo. (Photo: Michael Durham / Oregon Zoo) Takoda, an American black bear, kicks back on a rock at the Oregon Zoo. (Photo: Michael Durham / Oregon Zoo)
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

Bears at the Oregon Zoo are helping researchers understand how they get around. 

Researcher Katie Shine studied four grizzly bears from Washington State University’s Bear Center and found that their feet push outward as they move.

She and her Ph.D. adviser, University of Idaho biologist Craig McGowan, went to the Oregon Zoo, where keepers helped them lead black bears Takoda and Cubby through the same walking trial as the other grizzlies. 

The Oregon Zoo posted video on its YouTube page of the bears walking on special equipment for the study.  

"We want to see whether this is just a grizzly bear thing or a general bear thing too," said McGowan. "You would think we understand how and why animals move by now, but we really don’t."

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