Black Bear

Range and Habitat: Alaska, Canada, United States, northern Mexico; mainly forested areas, swamps, mountains

Size: 4 1/2 to 5 feet in length, 2 to 3 feet tall at shoulder. Males weigh 250 to 600 pounds; females weigh 200-300 pounds

Life Span: Approximately 26 years in captivity

Gestation: Approximately 200 days; 2 to 3 young

Wild Diet: 95 percent vegetable matter; will also eat fish and small-to medium-sized mammals.

Zoo Diet: Science Diet, Natural Balance and omnivore diet, apples, carrots, sweet potatoes, greens, grapes and hard-boiled eggs.

Habits: Females bear young every other year. Cubs weigh approximately one-half pound at birth. Black bears vary in their coloration from black to dark blue-gray to brown and cinnamon. They run, climb, and swim well.

Bears enter dens in the fall for winter sleep but do not hibernate; their pulse and body temperature remain constant. They may awaken and come out for short periods during warm winter days.

The cubs are born near the end of January while the sows (females) are still in their dens.