This is the time of year where we, at the wildlife refuge, get inundated with 'are the bears waking up?' questions. So we figured we'd update everyone at once here!
There is still a significant amount of snow around the bear den and their hibernation habitat (around 4 meters in parts!). We allow the snow to build up naturally around the den to provide extra insulation as well as sound dampening for the sleeping bears. This snow will require some removal before we can start to put up their hibernation fenceline. To help out, our machine operators have begun digging some trenches in the snow where the fence will go. This adds surface melt area to the snow and helps it melt back during our warm spring days. As we get into April we'll begin in earnest to remove snow and hope the weather will cooperate and help us reveal the fenceline so we can put up the fence and have the boys come out and play!
That being said, upon review of the bears daily time-lapse video (found by visiting our webcam here
and going to the drop down menu in the upper right corner) one can see the bears are still sleeping 22-23 hours per day. They both look healthy and everything is progressing normally with their 2022/2023 winter dormancy period. As the days continue to lengthen in daylight and progressively get warmer we should see an increase in activity as well - this will be a sure sign that they are ready to come out for the year!
Follow along on our bear webcam
and also stay tuned for updates here. We can't wait to have Grinder and Coola up and outside and able to be seen by their throngs of fans!