World’s most famous bear in wild, 399, emerges from hibernation

Written by on June 16, 2020 in Rare Critters - No comments

Photographer Thomas Mangelsen captured images of grizzly bear 399 recently in Grand Teton National Park near Yellowstone with her set of new cubs.

At 24, the famous wild bruin,known as 399, is one of the oldest grizzlies living outside a zoo. In bear terms, she’s the age of a human grandmother. This year, she had four cubs with her.

The 350-pound grizzly emerged from her wilderness den high in the snowy back country in mid-May. Photographer Mangelsen has been chronicling the life and times of 399 for nearly 15 years.

One of 399’s biggest’s admirers, Jane Goodall was waiting in England for news of the bear.

The population of grizzlies in the Yellowstone region was given protection under the Endangered Species Act in 1975 after their numbers dipped to less than 150, and scientists feared they could disappear altogether. But their recovery, thanks to habitat protection, crackdowns on poaching and a ban on hunting, is considered one of the greatest conservation triumphs in US history. Today, at least 700 grizzlies inhabit the region and, luring tourists, they have paid tangible economic dividends.

Born in 1996, 399 has demonstrated the importance of a healthy female bear to an overall population. At least 22 bears are descended from her, both cubs and cubs of cubs (in human terms, grandchildren). It’s possible she could become a great grandmother – a senior citizen who is still having offspring of her own.

Generally pacific in nature, 399 has raised her broods by roadsides in view of groups of curious humans, including some who have exercised poor judgment by moving closer to take photographs of her and her cubs. She has, with one exception, demonstrated incredible restraint.

The population of grizzlies in the Yellowstone region was given protection under the Endangered Species Act in 1975 after their numbers dipped to less than 150, and scientists feared they could disappear altogether. But their recovery, thanks to habitat protection, crackdowns on poaching and a ban on hunting, is considered one of the greatest conservation triumphs in US history. Today, at least 700 grizzlies inhabit the region and, luring tourists, they have paid tangible economic dividends.

Please follow and like us:

About the Author

Leave a Comment