Ever since Carter Bear entered the Wild Enclosure that was the temporary home of Bonnie Blue, Ridgeway, and Marvin, the curators had observed that he kept his distance, remaining in a tree while the other cubs foraged and played together.  Noli Bear became a resident of the same Wild Enclosure recently, and she also kept to herself in her own tree.  (Don’t worry though – both Noli and Carter do come down to forage when the others aren’t on the ground.)  The curator finally saw Noli and Carter together, and these photos record the sequence of events.

Noli came down her tree first.

Noli

Noli climbs down her tree.

Like all cubs do, she stayed very close to her tree.  Cubs on the ground feel vulnerable.  They instinctively stay close to a tree for safety and security.

Noli by tree

Noli stays by her tree.

Suddenly, Ridgeway approached the tree.  Most likely he was curious and was just checking her out.  But notice how Noli’s posture has changed.  She is arching her back and her ears are laid back.  These are signs that she is not happy with his presence.

Ridgeway comes

Ridgeway approaches.

Noli retreated up her tree, still in the defensive posture, and undoubtedly huffing at Ridgeway.  He was not behaving in a threatening manner, and came closer for a better look.

Noli and Ridgeway

Noli retreats up the tree as Ridgeway comes closer.

Standoff

It’s a standoff!

This was the first documented meeting between Noli and one of the other cubs.  It ended as it began, with no harm done.  A short time later, Carter Bear came down his tree.

Carter

Carter Bear on the ground

Carter has made great progress since he was admitted to ABR!

Carter

Carter Bear.

Carter and Noli wrestled on the ground for a bit!  The first encounter witnessed by the curator.  Apparently Noli did not perceive Carter as a threat.  We wonder if it is because of size.  Noli and Carter are much closer in size than the much larger Ridgeway.

Noli and Carter

Noli and Carter wrestled playfully.

After their wrestling match, the two cubs went off to forage.