Troy Campbell, executive director of the Fisherman's Wharf Community Benefit District, said Gregory Jacobs was a fixture at the wharf for 30 years who usually sat in front of the Anchorage Building on Jefferson Street.
He would typically sit behind a couple of branches, wait for an unsuspecting tourist to walk by, and then lunge at them, sometimes growling.
Those he startled might scream or yell, but many stayed to watch and laugh at others as they got the same scare, Campbell said. Often a crowd would form, and many people left money in the tip jar for the free show.
Jacobs was one of two people doing the Bushman act. The other, David Johnson, styles himself the World Famous San Francisco Bushman and has a Facebook page with more than 800 likes.
"You hate them when you get scared by them, you love them when you see other people get scared by them," Campbell said.
"They really add to the character of the area," Campbell added. "Long before I moved to San Francisco I had heard about the Bushman."
Duggan's Funeral Home on 17th Street in San Francisco confirmed that a viewing is scheduled for Jacobs on Tuesday.