The GoPro marketing department will surely be rejoicing at the latest show of durability from the camera. After previous episodes surviving freezing temperatures, 12,300-foot drops, as well as some curious pigs, the latest inadvertent advertisement has come courtesy of a bear.
British visual ecologist John Kitchin posted the video after the grizzly took his GoPro during an interview with bear biologist Melanie Clapham in Glendale Cove, British Columbia, Canada. The pair had been observing a family of bears from a bridge above a salmon-filled river, where the camera had been placed.
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The bear displayed only a brief interest in the two scientists before the GoPro caught its eye.
“No longer interested in us people, she grabbed the camera and walked off,” Kitchin told Global News. She dropped it but came straight back and then took it to the other side of the bridge to have a little chew on it.”
From a point of view that most viewers will be only too happy never to see in real life, the video shows the bear’s terrifying claws and teeth, a rather comical sniffing nose and strangely roving eyes.
A very personal encounter
Kitchin is understandably excited by the footage. He is a wildlife photographer and filmmaker who is studying for a PhD in human-animal interactions, which gives him more of an interest in getting up close and personal with grizzlies than the average human.
“The point of view is just incredible – her roving eye, the dexterity of her nose, her family peering to see what she has … it’s the closest I’ve ever been to a grizzly bear,” he said.
After being chomped on by the bear, the GoPro survived but is now held together by duct tape. It is not known whether other camera makers have submitted their products to this particular type of testing.
Kitchin’s research and anti-hunting awareness campaign has surely received a boost from the video. “I’d love to give all the bears cameras if the footage was that great every time,” he said. “It’s just a shame she had to chew the thing.”