Lengthy Study Finds Most Black Bears Won’t Rely On Human Food

CBS Denver

DURANGO, Colo. (CBS4) – A groundbreaking study could change many of the things that are known about black bears. Researchers in the San Juan Mountains have been in close contact with 40 bears, going right into their dens during hibernation.

Heather Johnson, Colorado Park and Wildlife’s chief researcher on black bears, is finding more cubs than she has seen in years.

“These bears are not naive and they almost can’t be naive to human development,” said Johnson.

She found a den with two chocolate brown cubs and their mother, a gigantic 220-pound jet-black sow, a few hundred yards from a new development.

A black bear cub in the study (credit: CBS) A black bear cub in the study (credit: CBS)

The cubs only weigh five pounds. They’re smaller than the teddy bears toddlers have in their beds. When they’re brought outside it’s the first time they have ever seen the world outside their den.

The researchers monitor the…

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