We were recently watching the new BBC Earth series called A Perfect Planet, narrated by the incomparable Sir David Attenborough.
One shot focused on a group of bears that had just come out of hibernation. They were quite skinny and weak, having gone many months without any food.
Hundreds of them had come together at a lake, the largest such congregation of bears in the world. Their objective? To hunt all the salmon that come to the lake shores, and there were plenty of them. However, in this initial period, the salmon are very strong, and the bears are not quick enough to catch them. Most bears fail, and go hungry.
One old, experienced and wise bear though, had a trick up its sleeve. Instead of fishing from the shore, he swims coolly to the middle of lake, and makes a few dives to the bottom. Each time, he comes back up with mouthfuls. These apparently are fish that have just died and been deposited into the lake bed. The wise bear’s excitement is palpable, as much is the anxiety of all the other bears combined.
It always helps to pay heed to the wise.