Published on Jan 12, 2013
Lily the Black Bear gives birth to her 3rd litter in 4 years! She has two cubs very early in the morning on January 12, 2013.
Description of video for visually impaired:
(0:11) Lily is on her back, feet in the air
(0:26) She breaks branches from above with front paws
(1:55) Lily rolls to her side and makes straining sounds
(2:32) After rolling on her back, legs apart, we see her vulva contract, it is hard to see for sure but it is either liquid emerging or the amniotic sac
(3:37) Lily rolls to her side, we can see her lift her head, looking over her body, eyes shining in the Infrared light of the camera
(4:02) After a whoosh sound, she pushes on the mound of bedding with her left rear paw and makes her motherly grunts as she works to get upright and tend to the newborn
(4:26) We can't see much from over the mound of bedding but we can hear her licking the cub and then we hear the new cub's sounds
(7:35) Lily begins moving around while 1st born fusses
(7:56) Second cub is born, Lily announces it with a few motherly grunts
(8:56) We begin hearing two distinct voices
(9:55) Cubs begin "chittering", making the sounds of nursing.
Ely, MN -- Tucked deep in a wilderness den, a black bear named Lily gave birth to two tiny squawking cubs Saturday morning in front of a worldwide audience. Lily became an Internet sensation three years ago when researchers placed a webcam in her den and viewers watched the first live birth of a wild black bear cub.
Thousands around the world have been watching Lily after her den cam was installed last month so researchers could monitor her hibernation. One cub was born to 6-year-old Lily at 12:59 a.m. and the other at 1:22 CST, according to Dr. Lynn Rogers, senior biologist of the Wildlife Research Institute and North American Bear Center.
"Lily was restless Friday evening and surprised us by giving birth a week earlier than she has previously," Rogers says. "We're thrilled to hear the sounds of healthy cubs."
Lily greeted each cub with motherly grunts, just as she did when Hope was born on January 22, 2010, and when Faith and Jason were born on January 21, 2011. Newborn cubs weigh nearly a pound and are about 9-inches long. Cubs' eyes usually open in early March. A team of over 130 den-watchers around the world will record standardized data minute-by-minute until the family leaves the den in April.
"We're all learning together about the hidden world of black bears," says Rogers. "The 5-to-7 months they spend in their dens are the least studied part of their lives."
There are two NABC wilderness den cams this year. A webcam in Jewel's den shows family life with yearlings Fern and Herbie. Contrary to old beliefs about hibernation, the family is often awake with the cubs still seeking to nurse.
Broadcasting from remote northern Minnesota bear dens isn't easy. Solar-powered batteries transmit high definition camera images by Verizon 4G LTE cell phone signal to South Africa. There, WildEarth.TV streams video to the Internet.
The technology supports the world's longest and most comprehensive study of black bears. This is the fourth year that hundreds of classrooms around the world are following the Ely area bears.
The WRI/NABC is noted for its research using 'trust instead of traps and tranquilizers.' Learning from bears directly themselves creates a better understanding of the species as more people move into bear habitat. Old myths are being replaced with facts. Lily's family is touching many who watch the tender, often playful, interactions that are part of family care in black bears.
Since the first NABC Den Cam went online in January, 2010, it's clear people want to learn about bears. Journalists are taking note. BBC aired its 'Planet Earth Live' series from Ely last May. On social media, Lily the Black Bear's Facebook page has over 146,000 fans. Most importantly, the North American Bear Center is nearly doubling its size to include the Hope Learning Center set to open this spring.
Lily's Den Cam: http://www.bear.org/website/live-came...
Jewel's Den Cam: http://www.bear.org/website/live-came...
Visit http://www.bear.org and http://www.bearstudy.org to learn more about the research and the bears who are part of it.