Spanky Healing, Yellowstone Grizzlies - UPDATE August 23, 2018

Spanky’s wound is healing. He wants to lick it but can’t reach it on his right rear hip. SpankySpankyThe wound is granulating (a stage of healing) and is no longer so bloody. The flap of skin is drying up as the veterinarian said it would. Lorie Kennedy snapped a picture of him sleeping at the base of a white pine. Another picture of him is climbing on a platform at a feeding station. Notice his look. He has physical problems we are still trying to identify. If he takes more than three hazelnuts in his mouth, he ends up dropping the excess unlike other bears. Spanky sleeping - by L. KennedySleeping - by L. KennedyHe had only restricted use of his tongue. He can’t extend it more than about an inch and a half beyond his teeth, unlike other bears that can extend their tongues 4-6 inches to touch food and draw it into their mouths. I suspect that tongue problems are what make him drop food from his mouth. Other bears can dexterously use their tongues to manipulate food in their mouths. The neighborhood is watching him, trying to detail his limitations and feeling a bit protective of this special needs bear. Spanky is now 3 years old and is the son of the oldest black bear ever known to give birth (Shadow at age 28). Any thoughts are welcome.Spanky on platformSpanky on platform

On another note, an opinion piece by Ted Kerasote in the New York Times about the proposed grizzly bear hunt in the Yellowstone Spanky's wound Wound healingEcosystem is well written and is backed up by strong scientific data by top biologists. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/18/opinion/environment/grizzly-bear-hunt-wyoming.html.

Thank you for all you do.

Lynn Rogers, Biologist, Wildlife Research Institute and North American Bear Center

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