MacFarlane's bear was a grizzly bear killed in Canada's Northwest Territories in 1864. Inuit hunters shot and killed an enormous yellow-furred bear and gave the skin and skull to the Fort Anderson post manager and amateur naturalist Roderick MacFarlane of the Hudson's Bay Company. MacFarlane shipped the skin and skull to the Smithsonian Institution where they were placed in storage and soon forgotten. Eventually, Dr. Clinton Hart Merriam uncovered the remains, which he thought had been shot very far outside the brown bear's normal range, and concluded that it was not a brown bear at all. In 1918, he described the specimen as a new species and genus, Vetularctos inopinatus, calling it the "ancient unexpected bear."
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