Title graphic Manitoba's Black Bears
American black bears
American bison
Moose

White-tailed deer
Common raccoon
Chipmunks & squirrels
Other wildlife
Most people associate Manitoba with the polar bears around Churchill, but the province is also a great place to see their smaller American black bear cousins. And, yes, the bears in these photos are all black bears! The coat colour of this species varies from black through blue-black (known as glacier bears), dark brown, 'cinnamon' (like the mother and cub above) and blond to almost white (also called as spirit bears). In August 2009 I spent a week in Manitoba's Riding Mountain National Park - a relative wilderness in the midst of an expanse of agricultural prairie. As well as watching the bears from a hide, we went on 'game drives' around the park and saw more bears as well as other wild mammals, from moose to chipmunks.
American black bears
The hide was baited with dog kibble which the bears love! Although you can't really see it from these photos, the cinnamon adult has only half of her front right leg, but she has successfully raised several sets of cubs over the years in spite of her 'disability'.
Black bear Black bear
Black bear mother & cubs Black bear mother & cub
Black bear mother & cubs Black bear mother & cub
Black bear Black bear
Black bear Black bear
Black bear cubs Black bear cub in tree
Black bear Black bear
Black bear Black bear
Black bear Black bear
Black bear
American bison
The bison in Riding Mountain are not truly wild in that the animals are reintroduced stock and are enclosed in a large, fenced area. They are nevertheless impressive beasts. 
American bison bull
American bison mother & calf American bison bull & calf
American bison American bison

Moose
Moose are relatively easy to see from the roads within the park and indeed can be a traffic hazard. We got some good views of cows and calves, but although it was the right time of year to see bulls with impressive sets of antlers, the closest male we saw was shrouded in early morning mist. Here's a bull moose road sign instead!
Moose road sign
Moose mother & calf Moose mother & calf
Moose Moose
Moose mother & twin calves Moose

White-tailed deer
White-tailed deer White-tailed deer

Common raccoon
This raccoon appeared at the bear hide one evening and  could not resist the temptation of the bait even though it was clearly nervous about the bears' presence.

Common raccoon
Common raccoon
Common raccoon Common raccoon

Chipmunks & squirrels
A red squirrel also visited the bear hide to feast on dog kibble, and we encountered ground squirrels and chipmunks out in the park.
North American red squirrel
North American red squirrel
Thirteen-lined ground squirrel
Thirteen-lined ground squirrel
Thirteen-lined ground squirrel
Thirteen-lined ground squirrel
Least chipmunk
Least chipmunk
Least chipmunk
Least chipmunk

Other wildlife

Red-tailed kite
Red-tailed kite
Butterfly
Northern leopard frog
Northern leopard frog
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Last updated 18 September 2010