Dear Wood Folk,

Oh my, is this Makwa’s last appearance? I snapped this photo of him before he focused on his denning for the winter:

Makwa
Giga-waabamin naagaj, Makwa. Miigwech.

He did not come back the following year. Or did he? There were bear tracks, a couple of bear signs I noticed in 2019. It could have been him just sentimentally passing through his bear mama’s turf. Perhaps I will catch another glimpse of him someday. It might be hard to recognize him. This is Makwa and a completely different bear from the studio years prior:

Must be related!

Most years I don’t see many bears despite all the fruit and herbs and the compost bin Makwa first smelt. And despite there being about 40 black bears per 100 sq km around here. Or that is, I don’t see them during the day.

This last year I only saw one. The bear was 10 km away, noping a crossing of the road when he saw traffic, and when he met my warning eyes from inside the vehicle. It was a new yearling that looked and noped very much like Makwa. Maybe a cousin or half-sibling?

The dump is another story. I see at least one bear at the dump each year – and I am rarely there. They never look quite well to me. Poor dump bears…

Dump Bear
Poor Old Dump Bear 🙁

Even though our bear friend has moved away from mum, he will likely run into biological family members at some point. He will recognize his mother and siblings and even interact.

If he’s stayed safe out there, Makwa will be aching to start his own little families about now. I hope he has set his adult bear life up far away from people. If he really beats the odds, he could live close to 30 years. I must say, I do miss him and seeing how he is doing. The surrounding hunting lodges swear to me they only hunted deer and I heard of no bear vehicular accidents, so I do believe Makwa safely made it to his first very own winter home in 2018. From there it’s anyone’s guess. It’s an unpredictable wild life.

Good luck out there, Makwa, we love you!

If this is your first time stumbling upon The Wood Folk Diaries, Makwa’s appearance starts at The Wood Folk Diaries: Volume 1, Chapter 2: Makwa The Black Bear. If you’ve enjoyed his antics please subscribe or follow us on your favorite social media and be sure to turn on notifications. Our next chapter will be about a family of red foxes!

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