They say lightning doesn’t strike the same place twice, but they never said anything about being named the fat bear champion two years in a row.
For the second year running, 480 Otis has claimed the Katmai National Park’s Fat Bear Championship. Thanks to patience and his ability to pack away thousands of salmon without worrying about whether or not his pants will fit, Otis has officially obtained the status of a legend.
At 20-years-old, Otis’s ability to pack on so much weight is impressive since male bears live to about 25 in the wild. He’s not the youngest or the strongest, so his strategy revolves more around finding a fishing spot and staying there for hours on end.
“Otis conserves energy by sitting in one place all day, sometimes even sleeping on the job while he fishes,” said park officials. “His high energy economy helps to convert salmon into the maximum amount of lard around his belly.”
The Katmai National Park’s Fat Bear Championship is held every fall and involves bears going up against eachother in a March Madness-type bracket. Votes are held each week as the bears gorge themselves. The fattest advance until only one is left and named the champion.
There isn’t an official figure for Otis’s weight since they can’t actually weigh the bears, but he’s estimated to clock in right at 1,000 pounds. He’s a monster to be sure!
If you’re worried about Otis packing on the pounds, dont’ be. Brown bears in Katmai can lose a third of their weight over the course of one winter. That means that when Otis reemerges, he’ll be sporting a much trimmer physique until it’s time to start bulking and do it all over again.