June 14, 2021
Species of the Month: American Black Bear
Habitat and Diet:
Black bears can be found throughout forested areas of Ontario. Their entire waking day revolves around food. When they are not hibernating, bears spend much of their day in search of berry crops, hazel and beechnuts. They will also feed on carrion, insects, fish, deer fawns and moose calves! Since berry patches are a high-energy food source, they are a preferred meal choice for bears. These calorific hot spots help them to build fat reserves ready for their long sleep-in winter. Food selection does vary between seasons and years depending on availability. When natural food sources are limited, black bears will seek alternative food sources and often travel great distances to find them.
Black bears are solitary animals. The only time males and females get together is in June when they mate. Did you know that females go through a survival adaptation called delayed implantation? This is where the embryo doesn’t implant in the uterus until fall. This is to allow females enough time to gain weight to see them through hibernation.
Bears and EBC:
Evidence of black bears has been seen on a number of EBC properties: Barney Lake, Stokes Bay, Gosling Marsh Lake and Stephens. Most recently at our latest reserve - Heaven's Gate!