Black Bear #17-0127

Admission Date: 
February 19, 2017
Release Date: 
April 21, 2017
Location of Rescue: 
Stanardsville, VA
Cause of Admission / Condition: 
Very thin
Patient Status: 
Patient Archive

On February 19, a tiny Black Bear yearling was admitted after a homeowner found the bear on his property in Stanardsville, Virginia. The bear was bright, alert, and feisty, but dehydrated and in very poor body condition; Dr. Ernesto gave the bear a body condition score of 1/5.

No injuries were found, but Dr. Ernesto noted that the bear's respiration was wheezy; radiographs revealed signs of pneumonia. Blood work confirmed anemia as well as low levels of protein in the blood. A skin scraping showed no signs of mites. The bear weighed 3.86 kg. Dr. Ernesto placed an identification tag in each of the bear's ears; this bear will be identified as Pink/Yellow Tags.

The bear was given fluids and a soft meal, and was placed in a zinger crate in the Center's holding room. The bear will remain inside for several days to ensure it is receiving adequate nutrition and fluids.

Your special donation will help the Center to provide care to this Black Bear … and all of the patients admitted in 2017. Please help! 


April 21, 2017

Black Bears #16-1133 [Yellow Tag], #16-1713 [Double Pink Tag], and #16-2409 [Pink/Green Tags] were picked up by Virginia Department of Game and Inland Fisheries [VDGIF] biologists on Thursday April 20 for release.

On the afternoon of Friday, April 21 the three bears (Black Bear cub #16-2564 [Double Yellow tags], Black Bear #17-0009 [Double Green Tags], and Black Bear #17-0127 [Pink/Yellow Tags]) were picked up by VDGIF biologists for release as well.

Rehabilitators Brie and Linda attended the release with the VDGIF biologists. Brie said that the bears were very vocal during the ride to the release site. Once released, the bears ran off quickly.

April 19, 2017

Black Bears #16-2564 [Double Yellow Tags] and #17-0009 [Double Green Tags] have been doing well in transition area #2 of the Center's Black Bear Complex. The bears have been steadily gaining weight, and now that it's spring and natural food is becoming more abundant, the bears are ready for release. After conferring with the Virginia Department of Game & Inland Fisheries [VDGIF], the team decided that Black Bear #17-0127 [Pink/Yellow Tags] is also ready for release and can go with the two yearling females.

At this point, the release of the three bears is tentatively scheduled for Friday, April 21.

March 13, 2017

In early March, the rehabilitation staff systematically searched the two-acre Black Bear Complex, looking for Pink/Yellow. They were able to shift the majority of the bears from yard to yard so that all dens could be safely checked. After a couple of days of searching, they checked yard #3, where recently released Black Bear #17-1817 was housed ... and rehabilitation intern Shannon was happy to report that Pink/Yellow was found in the yard!

The team set a large live trap for the bear, in hopes of catching him and moving him to a more secure location in the Bear Pens. The little bear has not fallen for the bait yet, but continues to move from yard to yard, likely slipping under the hotwire. The staff are providing food for him in yard #3 (where no bears are housed) so that he gets his fair share of food; the bear does eat in that yard but continues to make visits to yard #2.

March 2, 2017

On Tuesday afternoon, wildlife rehabilitator Brie fed the 16 Black Bears in the Bear Complex and did a quick daily headcount. She was unable to find the newest bear -- #17-0127, Pink/Yellow Tags. The bear is very small and could easily be hiding, though has generally been up and active in the yard. So far, the staff have not seen the bear via Critter Cam. The rehabilitation staff hope to conduct a more in-depth search of some of the yards today.

February 27, 2017

Black Bear yearling #16-0127 [Pink/Yellow] did well in the days following his admission. The bear's respiratory wheezes improved and, by February 24, had cleared. The bear was eating well and gained a kilogram [2.2 lbs], so the veterinary team decided to move the bear to a transition area #2 in the Bear Complex on February 25, to be with Double Green and Double Yellow bears.

Critter Cam viewers soon saw that the tiny bear managed to get into the main part of the complex with the other yearling bears later that same day. Nearly all of the bears were shifted to Bear yard #2 on Sunday, and Pink/Yellow was trapped and moved back into the transition area. Once again, the bear managed to slip into the main yard later that day. The team will leave the small bear in the two connected yards and will monitor via Critter Cam.