Bear News from Sharon Herrell - UPDATE September 20, 2020

TashaTasha

This week's bear news includes: Fall transition, Holly's red eyes and Ted's retirement celebration.

TedTedIt's been an interesting week trying to move bears, they have their own schedule. The bears are definitely in fall transition; and this year they seem to be a couple of weeks early.

Tasha enlarged her previous dug den to her current size. She's a few pounds heavier than last year. Holly has taken over Tasha’s den temporarily just as she did last year and the year before. Holly is showing great interest in that den by sleeping in it while Tasha is in her personal enclosure. The dilemma is always, will she den there or wait until I give them straw for bunkers.

Lucky is quite comfortable in his new space. He has taken out a couple trees and shown us that a proper bear could easily dig a den under the huge rock formation in his enclosure. He loves to sit against the cedars and sun himself. He also likes to climb the cedars and look over his property for intruders. (Editors Note: Click here for a video of Lucky)LuckyLucky

Holly has been very elusive. She spends her day near the dug den or in it. The mornings are always interesting for the interns as they watch either Holly or Tasha emerge from the dug den. They haven’t shown any interest in the dug den Holly made her second winter here. Tasha denned in it her first year here.

HollyHollyHolly's red eyes have always been a true sign of hibernation for her. She looks sleepy. I use her as an indicator for when the bears will den. I'd tell you but we have a denning contest going on, which ends on Monday. Good luck to all that have entered the contest.

Our sweet Ted is ready for his retirement party. His old coat has shed, and he is quickly growing in new and sleek black fur. The ridge along his back is over-laying with longer hairs. Last year his coat wasn't quite as far along as it is now. This is another clue that denning may be early this year.

Ted's retirement celebration will be on Friday, September 25 (time TBD). He will receive a large watermelon “cake” designed by his mom, Cindy. We hope you all will tune in this week for Ted’s celebration.

Thank you for all you do,
Sharon Herrell, Sr. Bearkeeper

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