ANCHORAGE – One of the ursine elders of Katmai National Park and Preserve in Alaska is now a four-time champion of chunk.
Otis, a brown bear estimated to be 24 to 26-year-old, was crowned on Tuesday (Oct 5) as the winner of Katmai’s annual Fat Bear Week.
He came out on top in an online competition pitting 12 large, salmon-chomping bears against one another.
Otis wound up besting the other finalist, a chocolate-brown male known as Walker, in the final round of voting.
“The portly patriarch of paunch persevered to pulverize the Baron of Beardonkadonk,” the park said in its Twitter announcement.
In his old age, Otis can no longer compete with the younger and stronger bears for prime fishing spots, according to park officials. Two of his canine teeth are missing, and the others are worn.
But when it comes to salmon, Otis is deceptively canny, according to explore.org’s website.
“While Otis occasionally appears to be napping or not paying attention, most of the time he’s focused on the water, and he experiences a relatively high salmon catch as a result,” the website says.
Katmai sprawls over four million acres on the Alaska Peninsula in the southwestern part of the state.
The park is home to about 2,200 brown bears that can grow to 1,000 pounds or more. The bears are fattened by salmon swimming in from Bristol Bay, site of the world’s biggest salmon runs.
The bears need their girth because they can lose a third of their weight during their winter hibernation, park officials said.
Even with Fat Bear Week over, park officials said on Twitter that Otis “is still chowing down.”
This article was first published in Asia One . All contents and images are copyright to their respective owners and sources.