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Calgary Zoo's unusual bear makes its debut

The zoo
The zoo's newest bruin, shown here in this undated handout photo from the Calgary Zoo, in the Canadian Wilds habitat is a rescued black bear that is decidedly light in colour. The distinctive animal came to the zoo last August from Elkford, B.C., where the three-year-old female had become a nuisance bear.THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Calgary Zoo
— image credit:

By The Canadian Press

CALGARY - For a new bear at the Calgary Zoo, sometimes black really is white.

The zoo's newest bruin in the Canadian Wilds habitat is a rescued black bear that is decidedly light in colour.

The distinctive animal came to the zoo last August from Elkford, B.C., where the three-year-old female had become a nuisance bear.

The zoo was able to take her in and save her from being destroyed.

Now, after a long winter's nap and some time to get used to her new digs, the bear is out and about.

The zoo is asking the public to enter a contest to name her.

“We are so pleased to welcome a bear with this striking colouration,” curator Mike Teller said in a release Friday.

“She is an important reminder of the danger of animals becoming habituated to humans and we will be able to share her story as we educate our visitors about these issues.”

Even though she carries the same colouring as a Kermode or spirit bear, she is not from that specific region in British Columbia.

However, her light colouring is attributed to the same recessive genes as are found in bears from that area.

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