By the sixth or seventh month in the den, most of these bears defecate—usually near the den entrance. You should never feed a bear in the wild. Bears appear to maintain their muscle mass and tone during the three to four month hibernation period. They use up to 4,000 kcal per day, mainly body fat, and do not eat, drink, urinate, or defecate. Some bears gain as much as 30 pounds per week when they are preparing to hibernate. It’s sad, but it’s all part of nature and the survival of the fittest bear. 'During hibernation, bears can lose 1/4 to … 4. Bears live off of a layer of fat built up during the summer and fall months prior to hibernation. When bears enter hibernation, their temperature does drop, but remains above 88°F (31°C). They reduce oxygen consumption and metabolic rate to a little as 25% of summer rates and breathe once per 15 to 45 seconds. Although black bears are said to hibernate without eating, drinking, urinating, or defecating, most bears in northern regions remain in dens so long that they develop extra large fecal plugs. Before hibernating, bears need to store energy that will sustain them. Bears become hyperphagic, meaning they eat to store fat that will then be used as energy. Even though they are meeting all their energy requirements by metabolizing fats, they do not lose muscle in the process. Fecal plugs have a light odor that is not unpleasant. Smithsonian reports that sometimes, polar bears also eat other polar bears. They will change position while in the den, they may awaken and move about, and they … If bear hibernation has become an issue of debate today, it’s because of the fact that they do not drop their core body temperature like squirrels or other rodents do. They can eat most of the same foods in captivity that they would find in the wild, as well as added vegetables and fruits. Bears must eat an entire year's worth of food in six months or less in order to survive winter hibernation and continued weight loss in the spring. During a black bear’s hibernation, its metabolic rate slows and its temperature may drop, but a safety mechanism prevents it from dropping too low. Once hibernating, bears do not eat, drink, urinate or defecate. In captivity, bears can eat multiple smaller meals per day, and they can be given more in the months before they go into hibernation. They do this by eating berries, which are rich in carbohydrates. Bears need to get rid of waste before they hibernate so they are not interrupted with the urge to eliminate while they are sleeping. Smokey and his brother, Bandit, will not hibernate as bears do in the wold. Waste products are produced, however, instead of disposing of their metabolic waste, bears … The heart rate of a bear during hibernation can slow to a sluggish 9 beats per minute. 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