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maximus bear

Wildlife Park welcomes Bear Cub

By Kate Spratt Posted on July 31, 2019

A bundle of ebony fur, Maximus bounds into his life as the newest permanent resident at Ellie Schiller Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park in Homosassa, Florida!

In February, young Maximus was born in the wild, then orphaned by his mother for unknown reasons. He was found by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) weighing a mere four pounds at the time of rescue.

The tiny young bear received medical care and around-the-clock supervision, requiring frequent feedings. Despite care givers best efforts, FWC deemed the young bear non-releasable and it just happened that there was space available for a permanent resident bear at Homosassa.

Florida’s only Wildlife State Park works in cooperation with FWC to rehabilitate orphaned black bears and release them back into the wild and has the facilities to house several non-releasable bears.

Prior to Maximus’ arrival, the State Park housed one adult Florida black bear, Biddy. She and her twin brother, Brutus, arrived as cubs in the early 2000s and resided here since.

black bears
Brutus and Biddy were brother and sister black bear residents at the park until Brutus passed away in 2018. Photo by Joe Dube

With the passing of Brutus in 2018, Biddy has been the only resident Florida black bear in the park. Not to worry: she has enjoyed her solitude, as female bears typically keep to themselves in the wild. With this in mind, Biddy and the newcomer Maximus will spend time on exhibit separately, following a rotating schedule the Wildlife Park’s resident panthers.

maximus bear
Maximus the baby bear will be on display at the Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park July 31, and August 3-4 from 2:30-3:30 pm.

Interested in coming to the park to view the young Maximus?

Maximus, the baby black bear, will be in a special exhibit located on the Wildlife Walk across from the bobcats on Wednesday, July 31, and Saturday, and Sunday, August 3-4 from 2:30 pm to 3:30 pm, weather permitting.

Visitors to the park will have the opportunity to see Maximus and speak with a ranger about him. For more information, call the Homosassa Springs Wildlife State Park office at 352-628-5343.

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