Black Bear cub #19-0546 [No Tag]

Admission Date: 
April 24, 2019
Location of Rescue: 
Augusta County, Virginia
Cause of Admission / Condition: 
Separated from mother
Patient Status: 
Current Patient

On April 22, a citizen in Augusta County saw a Black Bear cub by itself but did not interfere. When the lone cub was spotted the following evening, the citizen contacted the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries, who came and picked up the cub. On the afternoon of April 24, DGIF officials brought the cub to the Wildlife Center.  

Dr. Ernesto, the Center’s hospital director, examined the small female cub when she arrived. No injuries or abnormalities were found, and the cub was given oral electrolytes and placed in a crate for the evening.

On the morning of April 25, wildlife rehabilitator Kelsey placed this new cub with our other Black Bear cub, #19-0492. The two will grow up together for the next year, until both are old enough for release in the spring of 2020.

Your donation will help provide long-term rehabilitative care to this cub -- and thousands of other wild animals at the Center in 2019. Please help!


March 10, 2020

The four Black Bear cubs of 2019 have been doing well in the Center’s Bear Complex. Regular Critter Cam watchers may have noticed that the bears have been particularly active during the past few weeks, which is a good reminder that spring – the ideal time for these bears to be released back into the wild -- is quickly approaching! In preparation for planning the bears’ eventual release, the Center’s rehabilitation staff are closely observing their behaviors and overall health. Black Bears #19-0546 (No Tag) and #19-0492 (White Tag) are regularly seen roaming the complex together, while Black Bear #19-3292 (Green Tag) seems to spend more time apart from the other bears. Black Bear #19-3305 (Pink Tag) is very rarely seen on camera; the rehabilitation staff report that Pink Tag hasn’t interacted with the other bears much, but seems to have chosen a specific artificial den within the transition area to spend most of her time in. To ensure Pink Tag is receiving proper nutrition, the staff are delivering food to both the transition area and the open Bear Yard.

All four of these bears have reached the age that they would begin to disperse from sows in the wild, and spring weather will soon increase the amount food and other resources available to wild bears in Virginia. During the coming weeks the rehabilitation staff will continue to monitor the bears, and will begin the planning process for their release in April.



May 31, 2019

The Black Bear cub “sisters” are growing up! At this week’s weigh-in,  No Tag was 5.2 kg, and White Tag was unable to be picked up for weighing. Wildlife rehabilitator Kelsey reported that the two are very feisty and have zero interest in humans; she and fellow rehabilitator Shannon decided that since both cubs are more than 5.0 kg and very difficult to handle, they won't be weighed until they are fully weaned and ready to go to the Complex. White Tag has been very protective of her smaller introduced sister.

The cubs are still eating their “mush bowls” with thickened formula twice a day, but also are now receiving a small juvenile bear meal with fruits, seeds, and veggies.

May 22, 2019

The two Black Bear cubs are doing well in the Large Mammal enclosure, as many Critter Cam viewers have seen for themselves!

A repeat DTM (dermatophyte test medium) was run this week to check for the ringworm fungus for which both cubs are being treated; unfortunately, the test came back positive, indicating that the ringworm was not fully resolved. Treatment [a topical spray] will continue twice a day for the next week or two. 

Both cubs are gaining weight; the rehab teams weigh each cub once a week, on Thursdays. No Tag weighed in at 3.87 kg on May 16, and White Tag weighed 5.60 kg.

May 15, 2019

On the afternoon of May 14, the two Black Bear cubs were moved to the Large Mammal Isolation enclosure – and are now on cam! Check out Critter Cam 2 to watch Cub Cam.

Black Bear cub #19-0492 – the larger of the two cubs – had a white ear tag placed in her right ear for identification purposes. She weighed in at 5.50 kg on May 13. Black Bear cub #19-0546 weighed in at 3.75 kg and will be our “No Tag” cub this year.

Both cubs are eating their mush bowls twice a day, which at this point contain thickened bear formula, soaked puppy show, small piece of fruits, and small pieces of soft veggies.

May 13, 2019

The two Black Bear cub "sisters" are doing well; wildlife rehabilitator Shannon recorded a couple of video clips during a recent playtime. The cubs are more quiet and wary than past cubs – while the two enjoy playing with one another, they’re always careful to keep a watchful eye on the humans who are present.

Stay tuned for more updates later this week, as the two get ready to move to the Large Mammal Isolation enclosure!

May 10, 2019

Black Bear cubs #19-0492 and #19-0546 [Pink] are both growing quickly; they’re eating “mush bowls” three times a day and are gaining weight. At last weigh-in, #19-0492 weighed 4.20 kg and #19-0546 [Pink] was 3.11 kg.

The rehab staff noted that Pink cub intermittently has tremors, though they believe this is behavioral and due to nervousness; both cubs are not inclined to interact with the three staff caregivers. Last week, the staff noted some mild hair loss on cub #19-0492’s face; a diagnostic test for ringworm was performed, which was positive. Both cubs are being treated with a topical antifungal.

Several minor repairs have been made to the Large Mammal Isolation enclosure; next week, carpentry volunteers will fix the heavy-duty log “furniture” in both sides of the enclosure. After these repairs are made, the cubs will be moved to the Large Mammal Enclosure – which means they’ll be on cam by the end of next week. Stay tuned for more updates!

May 1, 2019

The two Black Bear cubs -- #19-0492 and #19-0546 – are both doing well and enjoying each other’s company. Both have gained weight since arrival and are eating well; #19-0492 prefers to eat her thickened formula out of a bowl, instead of a bottle and weighs 2.95 kg. The newer bear has been bottle-feeding well though within the past couple days, is transitioning to bowl feeding as well. The cubs are becoming more active, according to the rehab staff.