The brown bear (Ursus arctos) is the widest distributed bear of the bear family (Ursidae) on our planet.
Two subspecies can be distinguished: in Europe we have the Eurasian brown bear (Ursus arctos arctos) and in Northern America the grizzly bear (Ursus arctos horribilis).
They differ in size and behaviour. While the grizzly tends to be larger and more aggressive even towards humans, the Eurasian brown bear is usually smaller than the grizzly and also much more shy, elusive and avoiding contact with humans. Brown bears play an important role in wildlife research and conservation, as umbrella species, keystone species and indicator species.