Grizzly Cub at Grand Teton National Park

Photo of 1.5 year old grizzly cub on its own.

Abandoned by Its Mother

I haven’t ever gone through Grand Teton on my way to or from Yellowstone, but I was leaning toward doing that on the way home this year when someone in Yellowstone told me of a spot to photograph a great gray owl.  That was all I needed to hear to make up my mind.  I didn’t find the owl, but this grizzly cub made up for it.

It is one of three cubs born to famous #399 a year and a half ago.  399 has become famous because of her habit of living with her cubs close to roads and humans.  Some believe she does this because boars are less likely to frequent such areas and thus the likelihood of a boar killing her cubs is lessened.  The downside to this is that her cubs can pick up the same habit and bears that are comfortable near humans and roads is not a good thing.  This cub is spending a lot of time close to the road at the intersection with Pilgrim Creek.

It’s not normal for a grizzly sow to give her cubs the boot at one year of age, but that’s what 399 does.  NPS says 399 was abandoned by her mom at that age and thus to 399 that’s what a mom does, I guess.  This cub’s chances of survival would seem to be lessened somewhat without the extra year of protection and education mom could provide.

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About Jim Coda

I am a nature photographer living in the San Francisco Bay Area. I specialize in photos of birds, mammals, and landscapes.
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