This Chonky Bear Was Just Named Winner of the 2022 ‘Fat Bear Week’ Contest

747 Wins Fat Bear Week 2022

Photo: National Park Service/Courtesy of L. Law

A bear identified as 747 just earned the coveted title of the 2022 Fat Bear Week champion. This contest, a joint initiative by Katmai National Park and, asks the public to vote for the bear they think has gained the most weight prior to hibernation season on the Alaskan reserve. In the final duel of this March Madness-style bracket, 747 defeated the runner-up, a young adult female bear identified as 901, by more than 10,000 votes. As the clear winner, he's been described as “very fat with a low-hanging belly and uniformly dark brown fur.”

Being named the chubby champion of this competition is nothing new for 747, though. He had previously taken the crown in 2020. The large adult male, who weighs nearly one ton, has been known for his wide frame and other physical features—including his blocky muzzle and a floppy right ear—by those who study the animals of Katmai National Park for quite some time.

Mike Fitz, a former ranger and the founder of Fat Bear Week, endorsed 747 because he is, simply, an impressive specimen. “He is the largest bear I've ever seen,” Fitz told Buzzfeed News. “He’s always super fat in the fall, and he’s just a great bear to watch…a tough competitor, one of the more dominant bears at the waterfall.”

Though 747 will not receive a prize—nor is he aware of being a two-time champion—this thicc bear has helped shine a light on the creatures that call this park home and the importance of a balanced habitat. “For bears, fat equals survival,” says the National Park Service. “Fat bears exemplify the richness of this area, a wild region that is home to more brown bears than people and the largest, healthiest runs of sockeye salmon left on the planet.”

After a grueling competition, it's time for these chubby pals to get ready for winter. “The bears might be going into a food coma, but the festivities aren’t over!” the Katmai National Park tweeted. You can keep up with what these bears are up to by following the park and on Twitter.

A bear identified as 747 was just crowned the winner of the 2022 Fat Bear Week competition.

This contest, a joint initiative by Katmai National Park and, shines a light on the bears that call this Alaskan reserve home.

747 Wins Fat Bear Week 2022

Photo: National Park Service

All images via the National Park Service.

Katmai National Park and Preserve: Website | Instagram | Facebook

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Regina Sienra

Regina Sienra is a Staff Writer at My Modern Met. Based in Mexico City, Mexico, she holds a bachelor’s degree in Communications with specialization in Journalism from the National Autonomous University of Mexico. She has 10+ years’ experience in Digital Media, writing for outlets in both English and Spanish. Her love for the creative arts—especially music and film—drives her forward every day.
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