Our last post was about Finnegan Bear’s last day at ABR.  Yes, he has gone, and for the first time in over nineteen months ABR has no bears onsite.  Today we review the ABR life of Finnegan, from his arrival in March through his departure eight months later.


He weighed just 2.9 pounds and had to be syringe-fed at first, in the Cub Nursery.


To lessen the interaction with humans, Curator Coy invented a bottle feeder for Finn.

Finn-stuffed friends

He had stuffed friends for company in the Cub Nursery.

Finn- Cub House

In April, Finn was moved into The Cub House.

Finn- Acclimation Pen

From there, he went into the Acclimation Pen.

Finn- Wild Enclosure

It wasn’t long before he was released into the Wild Enclosure, where he spent the rest of his time at ABR.

Finn- tree

He was a good tree climber.


He often stayed up high in a tree overnight.


He showed his distaste for being photographed.


His first swim was accidental, but he learned to love the pool.


During the summer he became quite a swimmer.

Finn - Mother Bunny

Before he and the two siblings became friends, Finn was comforted by Mother Bunny.

Three cubs

It took a while, but the three cubs adjusted and spent time foraging and playing together.


He seemed to have issues with leaves that stuck to his bottom when he was foraging.


Finnegan grew into a handsome bear.

His workup, tagging and collaring was done on the day that Andy and Eliza were released.  All three cubs had been lured into the Acclimation Pen, so it made sense to do the workups on the same day, thus avoiding the need to sedate Finnegan another time.


His teeth were strong, white and healthy.

Finn- tags and collar.

He received his ear tags and his collar.  He weighed 66.5 pounds!


Finnegan’s hind paw.

Finn- angry cub

Finn was an angry little cub when he awoke from the sedation and found himself back in the Acclimation Pen (but not for long, as he was back in the Wild Enclosure very soon).

Finn - truck

The TWRA truck, with Finnegan aboard, left ABR.

This cub year (which started for ABR in March 2015) was a record-breaker.  We cared for a total of 56 orphaned cubs – more than any other year in our twenty-year history.  In 2016 the mast crop has been much better, so we don’t expect to receive any additional cubs until next spring.  That will give us the opportunity to work on some much-needed maintenance projects.

We will post about these projects through the months to come, so keep checking.  We may revisit some of the cubs from this or previous years, just to keep you interested.  Thank you for your interest and support of Appalachian Bear Rescue.