Two male black bears prepare to fight. One brave photographer had a ring-side seat at the boxing match.
The 300lb animals were spotted in a wooded area of Ontario. As they tried to prove who’s boss.
Photographer Megan Lorenz captured the bears on camera. As they moved about battled each other.
She had travelled to the region to chart the progress of the bears. After the annual spring bear hunt had been restarted in 2014.
Lorenz has been studying the bears for years. He was able to close to the animals.
As well as taking pictures of the thrilling battle between two males. Lorenz and MacDonald also got right up close to their subjects quite by accident. As the bears moved around them.
Lorenz said: ‘The spring bear hunt was cancelled in 1999. Bear cubs were being orphaned of starvation. Because their mothers were being killed.
The spring bear hunt in a few test areas. As a photographer you get very attached to the animals. You photograph on a regular basis could put them in danger for various reasons.
‘This was quite a surprise. I decided the best thing to do in that situation was to keep calm, talk to the bear in a low voice and wait until he moved on.
‘If I was already down on my knees then I stayed there and when I was standing I moved back slowly without turning away from the young male bear.
‘I never photograph the bears alone and my photography partner Chris MacDonald took the photos of me with the bear standing only feet away
‘The bears are in cottage country and are used to living in a populated area. He showed no aggression or warning signs that he was stressed.
‘I was at times mere feet from one of the bears. This was not intentional on my part. While photographing bears which were farther away, one particular bear surprised me a few times by cutting out of the woods to my right and walking right in front of me.
‘Like any large predator, bears have the power to inflict horrible damage but they show tremendous restraint when dealing with people. Despite what most people are told, bears that allow themselves to be seen by people don’t tend to be a threat to human safety.
‘There have only been seven black bear attacks resulting in deaths by four bears in over 100 years in Ontario. It was a special moment for me but I’m not ashamed to admit that my heart started beating faster.
‘We have been conditioned to think that all bears are out to kill us but I have witnessed their patience with people, acceptance and their curiosity.
‘I think he was curious about me and my camera gear. I spent a considerable amount of time photographing them at that location and he was accustomed to seeing me around.
‘My fear is that he will approach someone else and he could be deemed a nuisance and killed but I’ve been told that he and the other bears keep a safe distance from other people.’