Things have gone pretty well with Yona meeting the other bears. (Remember, black bears are solitary by nature). Here’s the quick version, but come to any 2:00 Meet The Keeper program and you can talk to the Keepers first hand about what happened.
Sunday late afternoon we let Yona and Gus together in the house. It was fairly uneventful so we let Virginia and Mimi in too. Gus and Yona did some gentle play wrestling. After about an hour, we separated them for the night in preparation for letting Yona out into the exhibit Monday morning.
Monday around 8:45 we let Yona into an empty bear exhibit, where she could wander on her own. She stayed close to the house. We then decided to let Ursula into the exhibit. Urs did as expected- wandered around in search of food. Yona didn’t show much interest in wandering.
We then decided to let Gus, Mimi, and Virginia out. Mimi and Virginia wandered away eating food, but Gus hung back and spent time with Yona. They continued to play wrestle- Gus climbed to the top of the play structure repeatedly and Yona swatted at his feet.
Monday afternoon, all bears had access everywhere. 4 bears (all but Yona) laid in the yard and 1 bear (Yona) hung out in the house. I am sure she will eventually feel comfortable enough and head out, but for now, evidently there’s no place like home.
This morning, Tuesday, Cassidy reported that when given access to the exhibit, Yona immediately went out, would wrestle with Gus, and then would come back in. So, still venturing out a little more with time.
We’ll post photos and videos in the next few days, so stay tuned.