On November 8, a Black Bear yearling was seen by the side of the road in Madison County, Virginia. A Department of Game and Inland Fisheries biologist was able to capture the young bear and transported it to the Wildlife Center the following morning.
Dr. Ernesto examined the female yearling upon admission and found her to be very thin. A deep, infected wound was noted on the bear's left hind limb; fortunately, radiographs showed soft tissue swelling, but no fractures. The bear's lungs were clear, heart was within normal limits, and no other signs of internal trauma were present. Blood work confirmed that the bear was anemic.
Dr. Ernesto carefully cleaned and bandaged the bear's wound, and started a course of antibiotics and pain medication. A protective e-collar was placed on the bear, and the yearling was set up in a zinger crate in the Center's holding room. An ear tag was placed in each ear for future identification; this bear is sporting pink and green ear tags.
The bear ate well in the days following, and became brighter and more alert. By the weekend, the bear was bright, alert, and feisty, and the veterinary team decided to move the bear to the Large Mammal Isolation enclosure on November 14 while the leg wound continued to heal. The veterinary team will continue to monitor the bear carefully, and will clean and re-bandage the wound every five days, as long as the bear keeps the bandage intact.