Black Bear Dens
Eric Richmond, a biologist with The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, says bears know how to stay warm. "As you can see by the hole, we had to excavate this ourselves to get in there. The hole was a little bit smaller than what you can see now. That much colder air was not able to enter the den being a tight fit in the rocks and the dirt around that, she was quite insulated from the cold weather."
Black bears find shelter for the winter in many different places, but they all have one common denominator: rain and snow can't get in.
Gary Sharp, a DNR biologist, explains what a typical bear den looks like. "Generally, the most common bear den is an excavation under a root ball, but whenever they get in a rock crevice like this, they can be a pretty tight fit. Typically when a bear picks its den, it's a place where if we get a lot of water, it will stay dry.
Bears are just like us, they become wiser with age."
That's why you'll see bears making their first dens in places you'd never expect, places which could use a little home improvement.
"We've found bears in brush piles, which offer very little cover from the elements, root balls, uprooted trees where they've excavated back in the earth. Rock holes like you see here which is what we all think of as a typical bear den, and surprisingly enough, we've found bears in hollowed trees." says Richmond.
And we've been there with the bears and the biologists every step of the way.
Home | Eyewitness News Newsroom | Storm Team Weather | Eyewitness Sports | Schedules
Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org for information or comments concerning WCHS-TV Eyewitness News.
Copyright ©2013, WCHS-TV8. Portions are
Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or distributed.