Learn about the life of black bear cubs at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 21, at the Los Alamos Nature Center. Wildlife biologist Daryl Ratajczak will give this free presentation about the trials and tribulations of a young black bear’s life to kick off Bear Week at the nature center.
The Pajarito Environmental Education Center and the Land of Enchantment Wildlife Foundation are hosting a series of events throughout the week, culminating with Bear Festival Saturday, Aug. 25.
In this talk, called “A Cub’s Life,” Ratajczak will give an overview of a black bear cub’s life through the seasons, starting with the moment it is born in a darkened den to its first steps as an independent yearling bear. He currently works as a wildlife biologist for the U.S. Forest Service in the Santa Fe National Forest. Apex predators and other large mega-fauna are his passion and specialty. Prior to joining the Forest Service, Ratajczak managed a black bear rehabilitation, research and education facility outside Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Throughout the week, PEEC and LEWF are hosting a variety of other events to celebrate our black bear neighbors. At 6 p.m., Friday, Aug. 24, the nature center will host a Bear Buffet dinner. Attendees will dine on a variety of foods inspired by a black bear’s diet, including smoked salmon catered by Pig + Fig Café. Tickets for the dinner can be purchased at peecnature.org and are $40 for PEEC members and $50 for non-members.
Bear Festival is 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 25 and free to attend. Learn about the latest research on black bears, enjoy a variety of activities for kids, join a raffle to win a stuffed black bear and much more! The Rotary Treehouse will have its grand opening at 11 a.m. Ratajczak will also be at Bear Festival talking about the “language” of bears and will explore black bear vocalizations and communication.