Takoda was nursed back to health at a local wildlife center. At around 15 pounds, he was successfully introduced to other cubs, although he did not appear to understand he was a bear. Bear biologists and behavior specialists in Montana deemed him a hazard to humans if released. Takoda was transferred to the Oregon Zoo in late November.
“He is very people-oriented, so his behavior is easily shaped by reward,” said Chris Pfefferkorn, zoo deputy director in charge of living collections. “We’ve done our best to minimize our contact to help him acclimate to his new exhibit and the other bears.”
Zoo staff says Takoda is settling in well with the zoo’s three other black bears –– Dale, Cubby and Tuff.Black bears are the smallest bears native to North America. Males can reach up to 6 feet in length and weigh anywhere from 150 to 600 pounds, while females generally weigh less than 300 pounds. Black bears are omnivores and eat everything from grasses, fruits, berries and insects to, occasionally, carrion or hunted game.