Stories tagged black bear

To paraphrase Jesse Jackson: "Hope is alive."

The missing bear cub was reunited yesterday with mom in northern Minnesota. Internet viewers have spent the winter/spring watching cub Hope and mother Lily through the birthing process and infant days. Here's the full, amazing story of their reunion. I believe the last thing heard from Lily after the initial emotional reunion was something to the effect: "Hope, you're grounded for the rest of the summer."

Here is YouTube video of yesterday's reunion posted by the North American Bear Center:

And here are previous Buzz posts on Hope and Lily:
Gone missing
Monitoring a bear birth

All the interwebs were aflutter when the Ely, MN based North American Bear Center turned a web camera on a hibernating bear, Lily, who shortly gave birth to a new cub named Hope. We've blogged about Lily and Hope before - a couple times.

Sadly, Hope has now gone missing and researchers at the bear center fear she may be dead. There are some interesting posts from their research staff that give you some insight into how little we know about these animals' behavior.

Did Lily abandon her cub? Did they just get separated? Is this normal behavior for these bears?

Lily, a 3-year-old pregnant black bear, made her den near a cabin in Ely, MN. Access to electricity, etc., meant that researchers were able to install a web cam in Lily's winter quarters. And today, their efforts may be rewarded. Biologist Lynn Rogers told the Associated Press that he thinks Lily's labor started today at around 2 pm. We should see cubs in the very near future.

Watch the live video stream for yourself. (A lot of people are trying to check it out. If you can't get through, try again later.)

I think it was about a year ago when there was report of a coyote found sitting inside a downtown Chicago Subway restaurant. Now here's video of an Alaskan black bear coming into and checking out the scene of an Kitimat, British Columbia Subway shop. It appears, however, that he/she didn't find anything appealing to his/her tastes. The important thing to learn from this video: the bathrooms are the safest location in any Subway shop.

This past weekend's Turkey Days celebration in Frazee, Minn., had a downer of an unplanned event. A black bear that had its head stuck in a plastic food bucket was shot and killed after it got too close to the celebration. Click here for the full details. So what are the lessons we can learn from this situation?


Snooze and lose?: A famous black bear (not this one pictured, however) in northern Minnesota may be sorry it chose a local cabin as a place to hibernate this winter. A controversy is now brewing as to if the bear is a nuisance bear and needs to be killed.
Snooze and lose?: A famous black bear (not this one pictured, however) in northern Minnesota may be sorry it chose a local cabin as a place to hibernate this winter. A controversy is now brewing as to if the bear is a nuisance bear and needs to be killed.Courtesy U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Here’s a doosey of a wildlife dilemma. A well-known bear in the Ely, Minn., area is currently hibernating in an open space under a lake cabin with her two cubs. The cabin owner doesn’t want Solo, so named because she’s missing one of her ears (here’s a link to her picture), under the cabin through the winter. State wildlife and local government authorities are now struggling over what to do.

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is planning to follow its policies and kill the bear and relocate the cubs to another area. That’s because Solo has become much to comfortable with humans, particularly the Ely-area residents who have put out food for her over the years.

Township government officials report that they’ve had numerous complaints from people that Solo has gotten way too close to them over the years because of her lack of fear of people. People are sure it’s her because of the missing ear. Authorities also point out that there are about 25 other bears living in the area, lessening the impact of losing one problem bear from the area’s wildlife population.

But several bear activists in the area are irate about the plans. They contend that their feeding of wild bears actually makes them less of a risk to people, decreasing their need or desire to go on to people’s property to scavenge for food.

The issue heated up earlier this fall when the bear activists learned that Solo was hibernating under the cabin. They wanted to place a webcam there to monitor her hibernation activities through the winter. The cabin owner didn’t like that idea, much less the thought of a bear and two cubs staying under the cabin for the winter.

The activists are hoping that other measures can be taken to make like with Solo more manageable, like giving residents pepper spray to scare her away, using electric fences to protect gardens and other property and increasing public awareness of keeping food and cooking utensils in bear-proof locations.

But the wildlife officials contend that Solo’s people-friendly habits are deeply engraned now and can’t be undone. Her cubs, however, still are young enough to learn more natural ways if they’re relocated.

What do you think should be done about this bear problem? Share your thoughts here with other Science Buzz readers.