Bear News – August 2, 2021

Already August – how did that happen?

In this week’s news the females are looking for denning sites. Lucky refuses to get up and Tasha is called “Little Round Bear”.

Bear weights:

Ted 613 lbs., Lucky 490 lbs., Holly 310 lbs., Tasha 333 lbs.
Last year moving into August, the weights were Ted 610 lbs., Lucky 485 lbs. Holly 316 lbs., Tasha 332

Fun fact: Hyperphagia: During the month of August bears eat nonstop in an effort to pack on as much weight as they can before hibernation. At the bear center, hyperphagia began a week ago with big weight gains for all the bears.

Interns clean the bunker dens

On Saturday the interns decided to clean the bunker dens. I placed no pressure on them, they were all for it.

Lucky and Holly were there to ensure the job went well. After removing the bags of old denning material, the interns dumped a bag of dead leaves in the large bunker. Both Holly and Lucky inspected their work.

Tasha standing on dug den

This past week a picture of Tasha was taken as she stood on top of the dug den Holly made in 2014. It is about 50 yards from the bunker dens. Tasha has also been in and out of the bunkers; could Lucky perhaps have a new neighbor?

A few heavy rains have hit Ely during normal business hours; we continue to take guests out to see the bears as long as it isn’t lightning. Rain doesn’t seem to bother most of the guests and our staff accepts it as part of the job. On one Behind the Scenes tours, a gentleman commented that the two males were in but the “little round one” came out for a treat. The little round one is Tasha! She is so innocently fond of her food. The interns and guests just love her for her silly antics and her personality.

Holly has been searching for a den also. As September and October come around it should be interesting to see the placement of the bears. Let’s hope Lucky takes stake in his bunker den with some authority or he may lose it this year.

Ted had another nice day out and about in the 2.5-acre enclosure. He takes his strolls casually and likes watching people, swimming and being free to roam. He is our most popular resident bear and never disappoints our visitors. They are in awe of his size but gentle disposition. His soft grunts as guests approach him show how happy he is to see them.

Lucky’s final shedding is taking longer this year than I’ve seen in the past. Hopefully he will be done soon. The interns are finding it harder to get him up for his breakfast or move him from daybeds as he rests during the day. As he gets older, he is moving at a stride that makes him so special to watch. He is such a majestic looking bear.


I want to thank everyone for participating in the Bear Bag Auction. A special thank you to our friends at the Northwoods Bear Foundation for hosting this fundraiser for our bears. All of the proceeds will go towards bear food and care. All of the bears love getting their treat bags. We can’t wait until 2022 to get everyone back together again.

The winners were: Holly bag designed by Cyprianna, winner, Cindy Sheff. Lucky bag designed by Carlos, winner Sydney Landreneau. Tasha bag designed by Rachel A. winner Anonymous. Ted bag designed by Jessica winner Jackie Witha. A watermelon bag designed by Rachel D. winner Rebel, and Treat bag designed by Sydney winner Michele Chartier. Ted will receive the watermelon today, after enrichment.

Thank you for all you do in supporting our bears,
Sr. Bear Keeper, Sharon Herrell


2021 List of Updates
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