Bear News – July 9, 2022

New transport cages, Holly and the watermelon and Ted’s visitors.

Bear Weights:
Ted 575 lbs., Lucky 437 lbs., Holly 278 lbs., & Tasha 319 lbs.

Bear fact: The black bear world is a matriarchal system of dominant females sharing territories with her own birth females. Dr. Rogers, as part of his former lecture series at various universities has said, “he demonstrated that black bears maintain a matriarchal society in which the females bequeath parts of their territory to their female offspring and the daughters maintain the territory after the mother’s passing.”

Holly demonstrates how effective she is as matriarch at the bear center. Although the females share 2.5 acres it ultimately comes down to Holly running the show. Tasha marks the 2.5 acres also but in reality, I think it will stay that way for the future.Yesterday on our Facebook Live broadcast we introduced our new transport cages. Each bear has their own cage. They are made of heavy aluminum and have wheels. The interns and volunteer, Mary showed how easy it was to move the cage. In November we borrowed a large mammal cage from the Minnesota Zoo to transport Ted to the university. The cage weighed 250 lbs. and Ted was over 700 lbs. It took 7 of us to move Ted 30 feet to the waiting bobcat. He was heavy, now it will be easier to move bears in the event we have to evacuate our bears due fires, medical appointments, etc.Holly was given a whole watermelon for enrichment. Her head disappeared as she relaxed and ate it as if it was a giant fruit bowl. Her picture is courtesy of intern Alyssa. She and Lucky were both climbing the cedars in the cabin den. I think they were trying to see what was going on over the fence as the workers were mowing and weed whipping.Tasha delights visitors as she seats herself in her tub and plays with her feet. She has been playing with Holly; much of the time they play in her enclosure. Many times we find her sitting in her tub with the ravens as her audience. I wonder what stories they tell each other.

Lucky is still following Holly but Holly is not showing interest anymore. It usually takes Lucky a few days (weeks) to figure out that Holly is out of estrus and is not interested. The dynamics of Lucky’s attentiveness to Holly and yet ignoring Tasha is annoying at best.

Ted has had many personal visitors this summer, he certainly has star status at the bear center. He was only out briefly this week. I allow Ted to make his own decisions but sometimes I have to make decisions for him when he’s out all day. The other bears appreciate my involvement.

As the summer progresses so do our needs. If it’s possible, please check out our needs on our Amazon Wishlist.

The decorated bear bags are currently sitting on my desk and ready for your bids. They will be online soon. Keep watching for details.

Thank you for all you do,
Sr. Bear Keeper, Sharon Herrell



2022 List of Updates
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