Bear fact: Preferred bears foods: nuts, acorns, fruit, and succulent greens. Meat and less succulent greens are eaten when preferred foods are scarce.
This past week brought a few rainstorms to the Ely area. It’s late in the season but the rain was greatly needed. The temperatures are still hovering in the 70’s with nighttime lows in the 40’s. The bears are definitely looking for denning options.
Fall transition is in full swing at the bear center. Last weekend we gave Lucky a bag of straw; guests watched him rake it into a pile and then to the small bunker. They were excited to see how carefully and slowly he moved the pile. It provided the opportunity for many questions and the opportunity to educate about the denning process of some bears.
Lucky has been receiving bag dinners since he takes his bowls into the bunker. It’s always a treat the following summer when interns retrieve bags from the dens. Some of which have been incorporated into their nesting bed.
Tasha rested near the falls after finding food around the pond. Most of the Tansy is still bright yellow and it makes for ideal pictures against the bears. Tasha’s winter coat is already thicker than Holly’s. Where do you think she will hibernate? Time will tell.
Our Holly stopped by Tasha’s enclosure to check out her tub. Holly enjoys treats too and often goes to Tasha’s enclosure or the cabin area for her share of the treats. Is she going to take her winter den from last year or will she wait to see what Tasha will do?
Ted showed off the last bits of his winter coat and I’m sure he designed it himself. If you look closely at the photo it looks like a heart shape. Ted is always the last bear to shed his coat. He will start growing a new one soon. Bears have two types of fur, guard hairs and undercoat. Both protect and keep the bear well insulated against the weather.
Thanks to all for all the wonderful notes to the bears with your Amazon purchases. The list is still up with our dry food needs. The bears appreciate all the treats, they are all still gaining weight in anticipation of hibernation.
Thank you for all you do,
Sr. Bear Keeper, Sharon Herrell