Mama bear, Blondie gave birth to triplet cubs 1.5 years ago. They are the first healthy and safe trio to survive in Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary in 13 years, after Blondie’s first set of triplets were killed by a male bear hoping she would go in heat. (Jenna Cocullo / The Northern View)

Mama bear, Blondie gave birth to triplet cubs 1.5 years ago. They are the first healthy and safe trio to survive in Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary in 13 years, after Blondie’s first set of triplets were killed by a male bear hoping she would go in heat. (Jenna Cocullo / The Northern View)

VIDEO: World’s largest grizzly bear sanctuary sees first set of safe triplet cubs in 13 years

Prince Rupert tourists voyaged to Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary and got a special surprise

Tourists aboard the Inside Passage got a pleasant surprise when they saw a mama bear, Blondie, out and about for the second time this season with her triplets.

The boat voyaged to Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary — the largest enclosed grizzly bear refuge in the world — less than a two hour boat ride north of Prince Rupert, on Thursday, July 4.

READ MORE: Twin bear cubs rescued after mom killed in hit and run on Highway

(Jenna Cocullo / The Northern View)

 

This is Blondie’s second set of triplets and the first time in 13 years the sanctuary has seen a healthy and safe sibling trio, according to Reinelda Sankey, a seven-year tour guide on the Inside Passage run by Prince Rupert Adventure Tours.

“We are so excited to see how they have grown,” she said. “This is only the second time she came out of hiding this season.”

READ MORE: Prince Rupert marine business adds second catamaran to its fleet

Grizzly bears can have up to five cubs at once, although that is quite rare, with most having one or two cubs per pregnancy, Sankey explained to passengers.

READ MORE: Photographer Dave Hutchison Captures The Natural World

Blondie was part of the trio born in the sanctuary thirteen years ago. Three years ago she gave birth to her own triplet cubs, but they were sadly killed by a male bear hoping Blondie would go into heat for the mating season.

Sankey explained that when a mother bear gives birth, their bodies will not go into heat until they are done breast feeding their cubs. Two seasons ago – May until August – the crew noticed that Blondie would have one less cub by her side as each month went by.

“But this time around we think she is learning from the past,” said Sankey. “She came out much later in the season and we are excited to see that they are safe and healthy.”

(Jenna Cocullo / The Northern View)

 

Sankey said the rangers, whom they frequently get their updates from, have not yet named the baby cubs.

Blondie’s babies are only one-and-a-half years old. When they are old enough they will wander off on their own to start their own families in the sanctuary.

Blondie gave birth to her first born less than eight years ago, Big Ears, who is still hiding away from the open shores of the sanctuary to avoid the larger male bears that will sometimes attack adults who are not yet fully grown.

Mama bear, Blondie, gave birth to triplet cubs 1.5 years ago. They are the first healthy and safe trio to survive in Khutzeymateen Grizzly Bear Sanctuary in 13 years, after Blondie’s first set of triplets were killed by a male bear hoping she would go in heat. (Jenna Cocullo / The Northern View)

 


Jenna Cocullo | Journalist
Jenna Cocullo 
Send Jenna email
Like the The Northern View on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Interior Health reported 79 new cases of COVID-19 and two new death in the region Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (Ben Hohenstatt/Juneau Empire)
79 new COVID-19 cases, two deaths reported in Interior Health

Both of Friday’s deaths were both recorded at long-term care homes

Veteran Henry Kriwokon has his photo taken by the Western as he celebrates his 99th birthday with friends at the Cellar in Downtown Penticton. (Brennan Phillips - Penticton Western News)
Turning 101, Penticton veteran looks back on life

Henry Kriwokon was one of the soldiers in the famous ‘Wait for me, Daddy’ photo

Stock photo from Unsplash.com
Study: Embrace national long-term care standards

Call to direct public funding only to public and non-profit long-term care providers

The BC CDC releases a map weekly that shows the geographic distribution of COVID in the province. (BC CDC photo)
Only one new case of COVID-19 in Golden region

The data shows new cases from Jan. 10 - 16

U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders sits in on a COVID-19 briefing with Dr. Bonnie Henry, provincial health officer, and Adrian Dix, B.C. minister of health. (Birinder Narang/Twitter)
PHOTOS: Bernie Sanders visits B.C. landmarks through the magic of photo editing

Residents jump on viral trend of photoshopping U.S. senator into images

(Hal Brindley - Dreamstime)
Enderby farmers caught between coyotes and bylaw tickets

The Smith family is stuck in a Catch-22 between protecting their livestock and incurring noise complaints

A COVID-19 exposure has been confirmed at Black Mountain Elementary in Kelowna Saturday, Jan. 23, 2021. (Google Image)
Another COVID-19 exposure confirmed at Kelowna school

Interior Health confirmed an exposure at Black Mountain Elementary School Saturday

Members of BCEHS Station 343 in Lake Country receive a donation of treats and wine from the community in December. (Contributed)
‘Unexpected and heartwarming’: Okanagan community supports paramedics

Cards, discounts, treats, more given to Lake Country paramedics in sign of support

A 75-year-old aircraft has been languishing in a parking lot on the campus of the University of the Fraser Valley, but will soon be moved to the B.C. Aviation Museum. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress)
Vintage military aircraft moving from Chilliwack to new home at B.C. Aviation Museum

The challenging move to Vancouver Island will be documented by Discovery Channel film crews

The North Okanagan Naturalists' Club completed its annual swan and eagle counts Sunday, Jan. 17, 2021. (Claude Rioux - NONC photo)
North Okanagan bird count shows decrease in swan and eagle numbers

Trumpeter swans were down 61 per cent from last year’s count; eagles down 14 per cent

Okanagan Indian Band Chief Byron Louis has served as the band’s chief since his first of six electoral wins in 1991. (File photo)
Okanagan Indian Band seeks nominations for upcoming election

A new OKIB chief and council will be elected March 30, 2021

Lake Country firefighters helped deliver a healthy newborn baby Thursday, Jan. 21, 2020. (Pixabay)
Lake Country firefighters help deliver baby boy

Firefighters from the Winfield hall assisted with the birth of a healthy newborn Thursday morning

A video posted to social media by Chilliwack resident Rob Iezzi shows a teenager getting kicked in the face after being approached by three suspects on Friday, Jan. 22, 2021. (YouTube/Rob i)
VIDEO: Security cameras capture ‘just one more assault’ near B.C. high school

Third high-school related assault captured by Chilliwack resident’s cameras since beginning of 2021

Most Read