In this post we’ll report on three more yearling bear releases that occurred on April 13th.  The three bears were Snowflake, Hazel and Chestnut Bear – three females.

Snowflake Bear arrived in early January and weighed just 8.5 pounds, a very low weight for an almost  yearling bear.  At UTCVM an abscess was discovered and treated.  It was also learned that she had previously suffered a fracture on her left leg; the fracture had healed.  Bears have truly remarkable healing abilities.

Dr. Sullivan

Dr. Sullivan examined Snowflake when she arrived.

Transferred to ABR, Snowflake spent some time in the Cub Nursery.


Snowflake Bear in Cub Nursery.


Snowflake’s portrait, taken in the Wild Enclosure. She was doing well.


Snowflake Bear during her workup for release.

Snowflake weighed 54 pounds at release – a good weight gain.

Snowflake collar

Snowflake was fitted with a GPS collar and was ready to go.

Hazel Bear had come to ABR in late January weighing 12 pounds.Again, her weight was very low for a one-year-old bear. However, she was relatively healthy and was able to be released into a Wild Enclosure within a very short time.


Hazel Bear on a tree in the Wild Enclosure.

Hazel - portrait

Hazel thrived. This is her portrait, taken recently.


Hazel was ready for her workup for release.


Curator Coy monitored Hazel and checked her ear tags.


Hazel received her GPS collar.


Hazel was ready to go back to the wild.

Hazel was the smallest of the released yearlings, weighing just 40 pounds at her workup.  But that weight is at least twice what yearlings that have survived the winter in the wild currently weigh (our newest yearling, #253, weighed less than half Hazel’s weight).  Some bears, like some people, are simply smaller in stature.  Hazel is a petite yearling.

Cecilia Bear arrived in mid-February and was underweight at 16.5 pounds.  She started to eat immediately upon arrival at ABR.  A week later, just as she was ready to be released into a Wild Enclosure she had to return to UTCVM for treatment of an abscess on her cheek.

Cecilia - UT

Cecilia being treated at UTCVM for abscess.

Cecilia - workup

Cecilia being worked up for her release.

Cecilia Bear weighed 45 pounds at release.

Cecilia - teeth

Her teeth were healthy, like those of all the ABR yearlings.

Cecilia - collar

Cecilia received her GPS collar and was ready to go back to the wild.

As always, we wish these three yearling bears the best in their second chance at a wild life.  Our next post will be about the last two releases during this very busy week in April.