In yesterday’s post, we showed Little Bit being moved by wheelbarrow “ambulance” to her new, spacious pen outdoors.  In case you were wondering why she didn’t go in with the sisters, Loretta and Rose, it is because she is so much smaller, and although her nose has healed nicely, rough play (which young bears frequently engage in) might open the wound again.  She has more than doubled her weight during her month at ABR, now weighing 30 pounds!  But the other 2 have reached weights of 60 to 70 pounds, so they are still a lot larger than Little Bit. 

While she was sleeping, her mouth and teeth were examined.  As you can understand, this couldn’t have been done while she was awake!   We can see that she still has baby teeth – a bear’s permanent teeth are generally in place by the age of 2 1/2 years.  Little Bit is not quite 1 1/2 years old now.

Here is another “while she was sleeping” photo.  It clearly shows her formidable claws, even at such a young age.  Her tongue is out because her mouth is relaxed.  Often, when sedating a bear to move it or to release it, the wildlife officers cover the eyes to prevent them from drying out.  This was not done, probably because she was not going to be sedated for very long.  By the way, if you are thinking that she appears to be very small, 30 pounds would not be a terribly unusual weight for a yearling when it emerged from a den.  Little Bit is a couple of months older than the age of emergence, but when she arrived at ABR a month ago, she was extremely small for her age.  Now she is catching up, thanks to the good nutrition provided at ABR.