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January 2012

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Kat,NC

Horrible NJ Hunt!
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/45575440#45569108

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe

You're welcome, B Peer!

B Peer

Mimi, thank you for the clarification, that the bronze is one of Smokey's bandages! I was wondering......

Kat,NC

Aww look at the pic. Thanks for the update Tom!

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Thank you, Tom! Oh my, a picture of the legendary Bear and his bronzed, uh, bandage. So much love sent to the one bear, who seemed to multiply it and send it back. God bless you, big guy, out there in the wilds of Siskiyou County!

Tom

Hi guys,

Today was the first day with NO FOOD for the "Full House Five". Needless to say, they are NOT Happy Campers!!!

As you probably have noticed, we have been having some problems with the web cam. The picture you see now is that of our fireplace. I brought the web cam into the house just to see if it would work. It did!! So, I am in the process of getting a new cable to run out to the bear cage. With 'any' luck - - - we will have a picture again. The SLO cub is doing very well. We are serving her every other day at this time.

Still no snow in Tahoe, but cold!

Tom

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

I never saw that at Tom and Cheryl's house. But mostly I stood at the kitchen door to consult with Cheryl. For sure it looks like Tahoe. Ho-ho-ho!

Lawanna-Champaign, IL

Wow, their digs have really been upgraded. lol

lil smokeys buddy

all dark at the bears home.....must be getting some real hybernating time in.

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Tom is probably having to be three places at once! This is about the time for straw, branches, twigs and all sorts of maintenance to do before it snows. We still have gorgeous clear weather, but it's very cold! There is a sense of urgency! Everything is harder or nearly impossible when the weather gets in the way. I've been reading Raccoons are the Smartest People (1966) by Sterling North. More about raccoons than bears, still an "animal fix". He tells someone else's story about adopting a "tame" adult bear! This man takes the bear to bed! [Would I lie?] The man wakes up with the bear's claws across his face. Nothing too bad happened, but the man later that night took a blanket to the sofa. The bear was made welcome, but found his own bed in the yard or adjoining forest after that. Nice old book! Nothing Tom and Cheryl would want to try . . .

Kat,NC

Whats up with the cam? Been 2 or 3 days now :(

Lawanna-Champaign, IL

Need my baby bear fix.

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Uh-oh, we're in the coal bin!

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

They have destroyed the huge pieces of pumpkin. Three are dozing on the shelf and a fourth is playing with the tire.

Marcia Hopkins

Lazy cubs sleeping on the shelf.

Marcia Hopkins

Better eat while you still can little bears.

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Thank you, Barry, for cleaning the bear house! Barry is removing all that brownish-orange stuff with a squee-gee, not hosing it down.

Kat,NC

Hi Tom,
Will the cam go back on the San Luis Obispo cub once the 5 pack are hibernating?
Thanks,
Kat

Michelle - Grass Valley, CA

Hi everyone, hope u all had a wonderful holiday. I have been lurking in the background, watching the cubbies play... just love those bear butt nubs! I wonder if those are peanuts scattered on the floor. Thanks to Linda for posting pics of Luisa. Wow, she's gotten so big. I've missed her. Spending time on ABR facebook page. They have 31 orphan cubs to date (4 new in the last couple days) Has anyone heard about the cubs whose mother was shot recently in SLT? Thanks to Tom and Cheryl and all the rehab centers around. You inspire me!

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

There has been great interest in the pool with one cub completely immersed in the water! He would come to the edge and hang on, then go back out of view. Hard to tell if the 2 and 3 other cubs were cheering him on, trying to help him out, or trying to prevent him climbing out! The water appears to be pretty deep. Up to the cub's shoulders. I think he finally got out, as I saw a cub with different color and texture below the shoulders. He didn't shake like a dog and didn't seem the worse for the cold water. Then his brothers lined up to bring big towel, deodorant, Old Spice, robe and slippers. [Is anyone still reading?]

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Very round bear cubs on the ground rootling in pieces of something orange. No idea what that is. Housekeeping has been in, so it isn't poop. Cheryl doesn't usually chop up what the bears can eat as it comes. Usually pumpkin is cut in half or large pieces. What is that stuff?

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Where are the bears? Send in the bears! Looks like the door is open so Management will be coming in to make adjustments. Looks like the cubs had a great holiday!

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

They have played all day. In morning sun, there were bits of orange all over. Also bits of white that might have been leftover fish. And three of what looked like plastic peanut butter jars causing great interest. One cub tried to put his front paw into it. Now at only 4:30 it's getting dark. Time to curl up together and stay warm.

Marcia Hopkins

Thanks for the update, Tom. And to everyone, have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Bobbie D. (Central Valley CA)

A Very Happy Thanksgiving everyone. During this season of spending time with family and friends please give them an extra hug because life is so short and we never know when it may be the last time together. So many of our Lil Smokey family have lost loved ones and furry kids this year that it reminds me how precious life is.

On a lighter note, thanks Tommy for the wonderful update on the very active Big House kids. The picture Linda posted of SLO shows how wonderful she is looking. You would never know she is the same bear that was brought in. For those of you looking for the picture it is on the "Friends of Lil Smokey" Facebook page.

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Oh, great message, Tom! I looked at my email and saw FB subject lines like "SLO cub taken" and I thought oh, no, taken where??? So glad it was only pictures taken! It's hard not to project on the cubs how WE would feel having our food cut back by half, and then even more. Thank goodness this is how bears cope with winter. I saw the door open yesterday while the cubs were in the play area. Wondered what was up . . .

Linda, Redding, CA.

Tom, the pictures of SLO are in Friends of Li'l Smokey in FaceBook. I just got through posting them. Thank you for the update on all the critters.

In case I'm not online tomorrow, HAPPY THANKSGIVING, Li'l Smokey Family! We have so much to be thankful for.

Bear Hugs!

Kat,NC

Thanks Tom, and Happy Thanksgiving!

Tom

Hi Guys.

First of all, Cheryl and I would like to wish each and every one of you a very Happy Thanksgiving. Too often, we take for granted the luxuries we are blessed to live with on a daily basis.

We feel honored that we are able to help hundreds of birds and animals - EVERY YEAR - to have a second chance at life, then, to be able to watch them run or fly away with that 'new beginning'.

Thank you Kitty Khat for that donation. We appreciate it.

Now - - - for the bears. We have begun 'slowly' withdrawing their food. We started off at 4 buckets of food each day, now they are down to two. On December 5th (approximately), we will no longer be feeding them. At that time, I will most likely move the web cam into the 'Feed Area', so you can watch them as they make their nest and settle down 'For a Long Winters Nap'!! We anticipate Fish and Game to arrive at LTWC in the first week of February to take the "Full House Five" to their release sites.

When I went in yesterday to raise the one tire - which had 'slipped' its knot - the biggest male (blue tag in right ear) appeared to be 'AT LEAST' 100 pounds!!! I would venture to say that all five weigh in at a minimum of 80 pounds. It would be very easy for me to say that all five are doing VERY well.

The San Luis Obispo cub is also doing well. She is probably very close to 50 pounds now and eating most everything we put in for her. We will not pull back her food for another month or two, with a target release date of early spring.

That is about it for now. I will try to get some pics of the San Luis Obispo cub on facebook for you to see what she looks like now. Talk to all soon. Again, have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Tom

Kat,NC

Ok, as Thanksgiving draws night, I'd like to suggest we all give thanks to LTWC for sharing their daily lives and their beloved guests with us by making a small donation. I'll start it off -- will you follow?

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Three cubs at the top of the slanting log. One standing on the stump with his elbows on the edge of the pool. Another walking around. Much interest in that plywood panel -- or something in that direction. What could it be? A smear of old peanut butter? Is Tom roasting the turkey outdoors? Lots of orange poop. The pool is murky. Room Service and Maid Service have been called . . .It's a Good Morning!

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Four of the five onscreen this morning. Rasseling, exploring, apparently challenging each other. The little girl who was middle-sized in the group now appears HUGE! One bear looks smaller than the others, but not that much. ... One cub just leaned into the pool and pulled up a dark blue ball with its -- uh, butt-nub? -- in his mouth.

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Marsha asks about weight of the cubs. L'il Smokey was 90-something, almost 100 pounds when he was placed in his wild den. Surely the largest of these cubs are close to that -- at least 80? And the smaller ones appear to have caught up just fine, though without lining them up, hard to tell. Before they're released, the traveling box is weighed and then again with the bear in it.

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Hi, Cheryl! There's Cheryl in a big puffy white parka with the hood pulled up. And Tom also! It's cold today. Bears get the BEST housekeeping today!

Marcia Hopkins

Anyone know how much these chubby cubs weigh now?

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Lawanna, I'm pretty sure their food is being cut back. Not sure to what extent, but it's not drastic at first. I think "Management" tries to replicate what happens in the wild when possibility of food just dwindles. I do remember the bears getting pieces of pumpkin one Thanksgiving, for what that's worth. Surely the cam will change and Tom will report pretty soon.

Lawanna-Champaign, IL

One little one is awake early. Looking for breakfast perhaps?

Lawanna-Champaign, IL

One on the top shelf, one on the bottom shelf playing their all time favorite, 'slap the bear'. How cute. Mimi, when will they start limiting/stopping the food?

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Bears are out and about. One was sitting by the red ball just contemplating the situation. They seem more thoughtful in this season, but perhaps that is subjective. Yesterday one cub got clear into the pool! Today their coats look shaggy and wet from some angles. The poop is orange. Lovely how God made their noses a lighter color!

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Maid service today was Cheryl! Thank you, Cheryl! Lots of huge bears all over the screen.

Kat,NC

Very true Marcia, each and every one.

Marcia Hopkins

Big or small--we love them all.

Kat,NC

baby butt nubs are cute, but these are becoming big butt bears lol, still adorable but a bit wider angle is needed on the cam.

Linda, Redding, CA.

Ladies....how quickly you have forgotten! =) Butt-nubb!!! They are all soooo big now!

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

One cub just came down the log. Lots of greenish poop all over. Somebody took a dump on the tire. How lovely nobody will have to provide them maid service out in the wild!

Kat,NC

Sorry, Sue, a couple had big butts before the coat lol, and now? (______)______)

Sue Horst

Does this winter coat make my butt look big?

Kat,NC

Bears are big with their winter coats and having fun. The littlest of the original three still sits looking like he's thinking, so cute, I love it. The others are too busy to think. Tommy, when do they stop getting food?

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Bear sighting! Two huge sleek cubs picking at the debris of food. What beautiful creatures they are! Momma would be proud.

Mimi - South Lake Tahoe, CA

Where is everybody? Just now I returned to the screen to see a woman volunteer frozen in the act of scraping a peanut butter jar, setting out the treats. Refreshed the screen and she was gone. No bears, either! Scraps of pale yellow or white stuff on the ground. Does that mean they got fish today?

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