Ken LaValley, our designated photographer is the only person beside the curators who is permitted to take pictures of the cubs at ABR.  With his professional equipment and zoom lenses he is able to capture details that the curators’ camera misses.  His photos are a good source of information for the curators, who can study them and see things that they don’t notice when they quickly visit the Wild Enclosures to feed or even to observe from the tower.  As you know, the cubs are not always cooperative about posing for pictures, but one day recently Ken took some photos of Sola, who did cooperate and show herself.  Here are the results.

First, a true portrait of the little cub that would do a portrait studio proud.


Portrait of Sola Bear

Next, Ken got a photo of Sola standing up.  Bears often stand on their hind legs, and many people think that it means they are going to charge or attack.  This is not the case.  Bears stand up to get a better view or sniff of something that attracted their attention or to hear a sound better, especially if their are competing sounds (wind, for example).  Cubs, being small, stand up to see over the grass.

Sola stands

Sola stands to find out more about something that interested her.

Finally, we have a photo of Sola as she moves through the Wild Enclosure.  It looks like she is on a mission.  Could be that she smelled food and is following her nose to find it.

Sola walks

Sola walks through the Wild Enclosure.

We are fortunate to have such a talented photographer helping to document the cubs at ABR.  Thank you, Ken LaValley!