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

Walnut Grove’s Shawn Meehan (front) has started another band, Trigger Mafia. This local country rocker has put country on the shelf, and is going hard-core rock with this group, releasing their first single last Friday to radio. It started as a way to pass the time during the COVID lockdown, and evolved. (Special to Langley Advance Times)
VIDEO: Langley musician drives rock revival with COVID twist

Trigger Mafia goes straight from the garage to radio with raw lyrics

A reminder to students at Surrey’s Strawberry Hill Elementary to physically distance during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
Teachers, staff should be included in contact tracing: Surrey Teachers’ Association president

STA says there is also ‘no harm in going even further’ with a mask mandate

A reminder to students at Surrey’s Strawberry Hill Elementary to physically distance during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
Five Surrey schools reporting COVID-19 exposures

INTERACTIVE TABLE: Search for schools, organize by exposure dates

The peninsula’s Community Christmas Day Dinner at White Rock Baptist Church – seen here in 2019 – has been cancelled for 2020, because of pandemic-inspired limitations on gatherings. (File photo)
Annual Community Christmas dinner ‘just not possible’ this year

Organizers vow that 40 years-plus Semiahmoo Peninsula tradition will return, post-COVID

Strawberry Hill Hall is being renovated and moved to another location on its existing corner lot in Newton. (Photo: Tom Zillich)
Surrey’s historic Strawberry Hill Hall being moved a few metres in $1.2M reno project

Childcare spaces coming to corner lot where hall has stood for 111 years

A woman wears a face mask and plastic gloves while browsing books as a sticker on the floor indicates a one-way direction of travel between shelves of books at the Vancouver Public Library’s central branch, after it and four other branches reopened with limited services, in Vancouver, on Tuesday, July 14, 2020. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
B.C. reports 234 new COVID cases, 1 death of senior who had attended small birthday party

Roughly 5,700 people are isolating due to being exposed to a confirmed case

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry speaks Thursday (Oct. 29) during a news conference held at Fraser Health office, in video posted to Facebook. (Photo: Government of British Columbai/Facebook)
COVID-19 ‘disproportionately’ affecting Fraser Health: Henry

Health region has about 75 per cent of B.C.’s active cases

Burnaby RCMP responded to a dine-and-dash suspect who fell through a ceiling in March 2020. (RCMP handout)
VIDEO: Suspected dine-and-dasher falls through ceiling of Burnaby restaurant

A woman believed to be dashing on her restaurant bill fell through the kitchen ceiling

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A can of Canada Dry Ginger Ale is shown in Toronto on Thursday Oct. 29, 2020. The maker of Canada Dry Ginger Ale has agreed to pay over $200,000 to settle a class-action lawsuit launched by a B.C. man who alleged he was misled by marketing suggesting the soda had medicinal benefits. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Joseph O’Connal
B.C. man’s lawsuit over marketing of Canada Dry ginger ale settled for $200K

Soda’s maker, Canada Dry Mott’s Inc., denied the allegations and any liability

Vancouver Island-based Wilson’s Transportation has expanded to fill some of the routes left unserviced by Greyhound as of Nov. 1, 2018. (Black Press files)
B.C. bus companies say they need help to survive COVID-19

Like airlines, motor coaches have lost most of their revenue

A deer was spotted in October 2020 in Prince Rupert, B.C., with a bright pink yoga ball stuck in its antlers. (Kayla Vickers/Chronicles Of Hammy The Deer Official Page)
Hammy 2.0? Prince Rupert deer spotted with bright pink yoga ball stuck in antlers

The BC Conservation Officer Service is aware of the deer roaming around the city

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
Kelowna Mountie hit with 2nd lawsuit in 2 months for alleged assault

Const. Julius Prommer is accused of breaking a woman’s knee during while responding to a noise complaint

Hirdeypal Batth, 24, has been charged with sexual assault and forcible confinement in relation to an incident in August 2020. (VPD handout)
Man, 24, charged with sex assault after allegedly posing as Uber driver in Vancouver

Investigators believe there could be more victims outside of the Vancouver area

Most Read