Kodiak Brown Bears

PetsExotic Animals

  • Author Derek Farley
  • Published May 12, 2011
  • Word count 415

Kodiak brown bears are island dwellers of the Kodiak Archipelago. They are actually a subspecies of the brown bear and can't be found living naturally anywhere else in the world. The Kodiak bear, also known as a grizzly bear, became separated from the rest of the world's bear population around 12,000 years ago. Although there are only about 3,500 Kodiak bears in existence, the Kodiak population is considered healthy and robust.

They enjoy fairly clean living conditions and eat fish from government-stocked waters. The baby Kodiaks, known as cubs, struggle for survival in the first few years of life. It is the norm for cubs to stay with their mother, the sow, for about three years. The reason for the decreased survival rate is because of harm inflicted by the male bears, or boars. The boars are known to eat the Kodiak cubs when they are not under the sow's protection. The boars are much larger than the sows and it can be quite difficult for her to fend off an attack.

The males can measure up to 10 feet tall when they stand and weigh up to 1,500 pounds, while the females typically weigh about 30% less. The Kodiaks head into their dens to hibernate around late October. They don't emerge until April. The pregnant sows, who are the first ones to go into the den, usually give birth in January or February. They don't come out until as late as June. The cubs only weigh around a pound at birth but, after nursing the sow for several months, they will emerge from the den weighing around 15-20 pounds.

The sow usually bears two or three cubs at a time and can continue to reproduce her entire life, averaging a litter about every four years. Brown bears have been the subject of much research because of their ability to hibernate without having any negative effects on their bodies. The scientific and medical communities seek the key to this phenomenon to aid in astronaut management and the care of patients who are not ambulatory. Scientists do know that bears are discriminatory when it comes to what foods they eat at what times.

For example, before entering their dens they will eat foods that have more nutritional value so that they can gain weight. They are said to be the world's largest meat-eater, but they really eat a variety of foods. These include grasses, fish and berries. They don't typically chase and kill other mammals because of the expended energy required.

You can learn about the Kodiak bear cub, and get more articles and resources about these bears by visiting Kodiak Bear

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