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435 holly and yearlings blog

How does a bear family breakup?

By Mike Fitz Through the Bearcam Question form Susan asks, “Have you seen bears ‘emancipate’ their cubs? How do they do it? Drive them away?” I’ve witnessed a bear become emancipated from its mother just once, and at the time I didn’t realize what was happening. In late June 2014, bear 402 had a single

402 cubs blog

Four Cubs for 402 Again

By Mike Fitz The sight of spring cubs elicits an air of excitement. Baby animals in general, and spring cubs in particular, represent the promise of the future and their playfulness and curiosity remind us of our own childhood or children. Raising cubs though, isn’t an easy task. Cubs face considerable risk in their young

dumpling mountain blog

Dumpling Mountain Hike

By Mike Fitz Rising over 2000 feet above Brooks River, Dumpling Mountain offers anyone a quick escape from the hustle and bustle of Brooks Camp. Each time I hike on it, I get an opportunity to see the land in a new way. The hike begins from the Brooks Camp Campground and immediately enters a

blog 132 and remaining cub

Death of Bear Cub at Brooks River

By Mike Fitz As the smallest and most vulnerable of all bears, first year cubs (also called spring cubs or cubs-of-the-year) face significant risks and challenges, not the least of which are larger bears. On July 3, Katmai National Park ranger Andrew LaValle and I were hosting a live broadcast from Brooks Falls. About 40 minutes

856 bear blog

Bear 856: On Top Again

By Mike Fitz This past week, one bear appeared determined to regain his rank at the top of Brooks River’s bear hierarchy. 856 appears to be big enough and healthy enough to show the river’s other adult male bears he’s ready to compete. Bear 856 is one of Brooks River’s largest bears, and from 2011–2016

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