Bears are not shot for Guards

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No Brown Bears are deliberately shot to obtain skins for hats for the Irish Guards, pelts are instead sourced from animals that are being culled by the Canadian Government anyway.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said it doesn’t buy bear pelts - only ceremonial caps.

It said that last year, the MoD ordered 127 ceremonial caps, known as Bearskins.

“Each cap can be expected to last around 50 years undergoing a number of restorations during that time,” it said.

“The purchase of new pelts by our suppliers is therefore kept to a minimum,” it added.

It further went on to explain how the skins are all obtained from animals that are going to be killed anyway.

“Pelts are sourced from Canada and come from animals culled as part of a programme to manage the wild population licensed by the Canadian Government,” the MoD revealed.

“No bear is ever hunted to order and the MoD suppliers only have access to stock made available by the Canadian authorities following a cull,” the Ministry confirmed.

The famous ceremonial bearskin hats are worn by the Irish, Scots, Welsh, Coldstream and Grenadier Guards.

Trials with synthetic alternatives have been attempted over the past two decades but proved unsuccessful as none matched up to the natural bear pelts obtained from Canada.