January 10th, 2013 – Release Day! Here is a sequence of photos that show how Colton was worked up and readied for his release back into the wild. Let’s start with a couple of images that show what a good-looking, healthy bear he is.
He was a little muddy, but isn’t he a great-looking bear? The next photo shows the wildlife officer affixing his eartag. Of course, Colton had been given a tranquilizer before this was done. Note the cloth around his face. This is to cover his eyes and prevent them from drying out, since the eyes remain open when the bear is tranquilized.
There are those wonderful bear feet, as Colton lies on the stretcher that will take him to the Cub Nursery for weighing and measuring.
Here we see Curator Coy and the NPS officer weighing Colton Bear. He weighed 127 pounds!
Still sleeping, Colton is loaded into the carrier on the truck that will carry him to freedom.
As the truck is ready to drive away, Ed Owens and Tom Faulkner, ABR Board members, watch Coy filling out the necessary paperwork. And with that finished, our Colton Bear was taken to his new home as a truly wild bear. Be safe and enjoy your new life, Colton – and please remember to stay away from humans!