Monday, November 26, 2012

Inside the Bear's Den - LITERALLY!

If you've been a fan of IEAS long, you've probably heard us talk about Bear Orphanage. Bear Orphanage is comprised of two 5 acre, naturalistic habitats for American black bears. Both habitats contain meadow areas, forest areas, a pond, and more. They allow the black bear residents of IEAS to truly live as wild bears do - but with room service!

One of the most rewarding things we see, in regards to Bear Orphanage, is how "wild" the bears truly area. Though many have been in captivity for the majority of their lives, their instincts are strong and very often, they exhibit the behaviors of a bear in the wild. Digging for grubs, foraging in the brush, climbing trees, and burrowing dens are things we see every day in Bear Orphanage.

Today, on a trek through one section of the habitat, we were able to spot the dens that several of the bears had dug for winter. They are currently unoccupied, as the bears are using the caves that we built and provided for them, so we were able to climb in and snap a few pictures. These pictures show just what a bear's den would look like in the wild. They are certainly smart, angling the dens to block the incoming northern wind, and digging in such a way as to effectively and efficiently block the elements!

We think that this unique look at a bear's den is really awesome, and we hope you do too! It's so amazing that the bears here at IEAS are able to live as wild bears do, AND that they do it so well!

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