15th Annual Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest Natural World
The Story in his Eyes

When I looked into his eyes, I saw pain, anxiety ,uncertainty, and a hyper state of heightened awareness. These are characteristics not typical of wild Black Bears. You see, this bear is missing a third of his right front leg . That is why his posture is as it is . He had to get down like this every time he browsed. Though his leg appeared to have healed well it was obvious his life was forever changed . I tried desperately to see the positive side and to be inspired by his strength and his ability to persevere and live life as normal . But the truth was my heart ached . I didn't know what happened to him . But my heart somehow I knew he was a victim of a cruel act of man . As with all bears I will never forget him or this day we looked into each others eyes . I apologized as if that might change things for him . When you look into another eyes look really deep, there is always a soul with a story and a precious being looking back.

Photo Detail
Date Taken: 05.2017
Date Uploaded: 08.2017
Photo Location: Hayward , Wisconsin, United States of America
Copyright: © David Shaffer