Spirit Bears
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Spirit Bears

by Diane Swanson
     
 

Explore the life and habitat of this legendary bear.

The Spirit Bear is a unique subspecies of the North American black bear. It's neither a polar bear nor an albino, but a black bear that's white.

Named the Spirit Bear by Native American tradition, which held that white bears were to be revered and protected, it is also known as the Kermode bear.

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Overview

Explore the life and habitat of this legendary bear.

The Spirit Bear is a unique subspecies of the North American black bear. It's neither a polar bear nor an albino, but a black bear that's white.

Named the Spirit Bear by Native American tradition, which held that white bears were to be revered and protected, it is also known as the Kermode bear. It is found only in remote regions of British Columbia which, until recently, were in danger of being logged. The official mammal of the province, the Spirit Bear's peaceful nature and stunning beauty make it an important presence.

About the series: Through full color wildlife photography and engaging text, Diane Swanson continues her acclaimed Welcome to the World of... series, which contains nearly 30 titles and inspires, fascinates and educates children.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781552858479
Publisher:
Whitecap Books, Limited
Publication date:
01/01/2010
Series:
Welcome to the World of Series
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
7.80(w) x 7.80(h) x 0.20(d)
Age Range:
4 - 7 Years

Related Subjects

Read an Excerpt


World of Difference


Enter the world of spirit bears. They're black bears that are white -- or that are black but are able to have white cubs. Black bears normally vary in color from brown to cinnamon to gray-blue to black. Only very few have white fur. In fact, in the spirit bears' main home of Princess Royal Island in the province of British Columbia, just one in ten is white.

Spirit bears have other names too. They're called kermode [ker-MOH-dee] bears -- after Francis Kermode, who studied them in the early 1900s. Sometimes they're labeled ghost bears because they can be difficult to find.

Never mistake a white spirit bear for an albino [al-BYE-no] bear or a polar bear. The albino bear is a rare quirk of nature. It has white fur, but unlike the spirit bear, it has no color in its skin or eyes. Although the polar bear has white fur, it lives farther north and is a lot larger than the spirit bear.

Still, the spirit bear is a good size. An average male weighs as much as the washer and dryer that launder your clothes. The male is about twice as heavy as the female.

The spirit bear shares many features with other black bears. It has rounded ears, small eyes, long nostrils, and a short tail. Each of its feet has five sharp, curved claws.

When the spirit bear moves, it often just shuffles its bulky body. But don't be fooled. If it must, this bear can run faster than a car usually drives through town.

Meet the Author

Diane Swanson specializes in nature writing for children. She is the author of many books, including Safari Beneath the Sea, which won the Orbis Pictus Award for Outstanding Non-Fiction for Children. She lives in Victoria, British Columbia.

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