Kermode bears are a subspecies of the American black bear found in coastal British Columbia. They are named after Frank Kermode, a Royal B.C. Museum former director.
|Scientific Name||Ursus americanus kermodei|
|Also known as||Spirit bear, Ghost bear|
|Description||Size: 3.3-3.9 ft (100-120 cm) at the shoulders
Weight: Females are 155 lb (70 kg) on average while males are around 300 lb (135 kg); they can, however, weigh as much as 640 lb (290 kg)
Color: Being a subspecies of the American black bear, most individuals are that color, but there are between 100 and 500 individuals that are entirely white
|Distribution||Central and northern coastal areas of British Columbia|
|Sounds & Communication||Grunting and tongue-clicking; they also communicate through touch, smell, and visual cues|
|Lifespan||25 years in the wild but usually only survives for around 10 years|
|Diet||Plant material, berries, and salmon|
|Adaptations||The thick fur helps them survive the cold weather their habitat offers|
|Predators||Cubs are vulnerable to cougars and wolves|
|IUCN Conservation Status||Least Concern|
- They have a crepuscular lifestyle, being active around twilight.
- They are solitary animals, except for females with her cubs, groups at feeding sites, and mating pairs.
- Kermode bears are territorial.
- They hibernate through the winter months by lowering the metabolism that allows them to survive for months without eating, drinking, defecating or urinating.
Mating & Reproduction
The mating season peaks between June and August. The gestation period is around 8 months. Litters may consist of up to 6 cubs but usually has 2-3.
Cubs start to walk at around 5 weeks of age. They are nursed for up to 30 weeks and eventually disperse at around 16-18 months old. They become sexually mature by 3 years.
- Kermode bears are the provincial mammal of British Columbia.
- Studies have shown that black Kermode bears mate mostly with bears with the same color as them, while white ones mate with white Kermode bears.