- The Marsican bear is a rare bear that is also known as the Apennine brown bear.
- The female bear in this video is named Amarena and she gave birth to four healthy cubs in 2020 which has not been recorded for this species before.
- Mortality rates for these bear cubs in the wild are thought to be about 50 percent.
The Marsican bear (also known as the Apennine brown bear) is one of Italy’s treasures. Italy is home to more than 57,000 species of animals but the Marsican bear is the most endangered.
In fact, Italy is the most biodiverse of all the European countries primarily because it is at the point where several continents connect: Europe, Africa, and the Middle East.
Therefore, it can provide a wider range of ecological habitats including mountain ranges, woodland, shrublands, and 4,900 miles of coast.
The Rare Marsican Bear
There are eight different species of bear and the Marsican bear is a type of brown bear. Their scientific name is Ursus arctos marsicanus although not everyone accepts them as a separate species. They are found only in a specific 5,000 to 8,000 square kilometre area in the Appenine Mountains. Most of this is in the Abruzzo-Lazio-Molise National Park which was created in 1923 specifically to protect the bears.
Marsican bears are the rarest bears on earth. There are only 50-60 of them alive today. Their diet consists mainly of plants and they like apples, pears, prunes, tubers, roots, fungi, and berries although they will also hunt small animals and insects as well.
They have even been known to take sheep and cattle and this brings them into conflict with the local farmers.
How Long Do Marsican Bears Live?
Their lifespan in the wild is 20 to 25 years but it can be over 30 years in captivity. Although, the mortality rate for cubs is around 50 percent which is fairly low. That is one reason this species of bear is protected in Italy.
The Bear named Amarena and Her Cubs
The wonderful female bear that we see in this video is called Amarena. She can be seen quite high up in a tree where she seems to be teaching her cubs how to climb and find food. We also see one of the cubs learning how to stand up on their two rear limbs which can be used as a sign of aggression when they are older but is also useful for reaching food from trees.
From the video, we learn video that Amarena gave birth to four healthy cubs in 2020 which has not been recorded for this species before. It is fairly unusual for all brown bears, who generally give birth to two cubs. The cubs seem to be well which is also great news – mortality for these bear cubs in the wild is thought to be 50 percent. Hopefully, this bodes well for the survival of the species.
Marsican Bears Vs. Brown Bears
The marsican bear is a member of the brown bear family, although they do have slight differences. While they are both omnivores and are nocturnal, there are a few of their contrasts.
|Marsican Bear||Brown Bear|
|Characteristics||Calm, no aggression toward humans||Shy but unpredictable in temperament|
|Appearance||Males’ head is short, large, and high, with a pronounced crest and a short muzzle||Round in shape and small rounded ears, with a wide skull|
|Weight||300 to 500 pounds||220 to 650 pounds|
|Height||5 foot 9 inches – upright||5.5 to 7 feet tall, upright|
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