Looks like Canada’s bears should’ve hit the snooze button.
Spurred by the recent mild weather and overall confusing winter season, bears have been waking up early from hibernation. Bears Juno and Genie of the Montreal Ecomuseum Zoo rolled out of their caves this week to stretch their big, furry legs–and they aren’t the only ones.
Normally, visitors wouldn’t be seeing the big wake up until closer to the middle or end of March, but, as you’re already aware, this hasn’t been a “normal” winter. A particularly strong El Nino gave the cold season a late start, meaning most bears were late to bed and early to rise.
Needless to say, the bears are pretty tired. Although zoo staff report that Juno and Genie are slowly getting busy again doing their regular things.
“They’ve been sort of raising their activity level over the last few days, so we start to see them walking around a little bit in their indoor quarters,” Zookeeper Nicola Fleming said. “Every day they’re a bit more active.”
While El Nino is mostly to blame for this year’s unseasonably warm winter, Canadians should probably get used to bears setting their internal alarms to wake up earlier. In fact, researchers recently discovered that a group of bears in Spain had stopped hibernating altogether, in what many believe is a symptom of global warming’s impact on the cold season.
In any case, you’ll likely be seeing a lot of sleepy bears in the coming days if you happen to live in their neck of the woods.