Appalachian Bear Rescue

Did you know that the American Black Bear may have brown, cinnamon, light beige, silver-tipped, or even white fur?

It is true – all of these colors occur in bears that are of the species American Black Bear.  By far the majority of bears in the Eastern US have the typical black coloration, often with a tan nose.

The brown and cinnamon colored bears are usually found in the western part of the country – from the Mississippi River west, and north into Alaska and Canada.  So Eleanor, our yearling #9, who was admitted on February 8th, is a very unusual bear for Tennessee.

She has the lighter, reddish-brown color of a “cinnamon” black bear.  We don’t know how she happened to have this color  but it is likely from a recessive gene in both of her parents.  We think she is very cute, no matter what color she is.

You may wonder if her color will change as she grows, and the answer is that it probably will not change.  Although the different colors are called “color phases” it isn’t just a phase the bear is going through (like the terrible twos) – but is generally the permanent color of the animal.

You can see that Eleanor has been eating well – look at her nice, round tummy!