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A Cream-Colored Bear Cub Spotted Playing With Its Black Bear Mother

A remarkable 5-month-old black bear cub with cream-colored fur has been spotted in British Columbia with its commonly colored mother

The rare sight was seen and photographed by Arthur De Jong, who is an environmental planning manager.

This black bear cub with cream-coloured fur was recently spotted on a mountain in British Columbia

The cub was spotted playing with its mother on the Whistler-Blackcomb mountain and has scientists scratching their heads.

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The five-month-old bear played with its mother on Whistler-Blackcomb mountain - and scientists are now trying to ascertain why it has such a light coat

They believe it is either an albino bear or a spirit bear. Both of these outcomes relate to a genetic mutation affecting their pigmentation.

One theory is that the young bear is an albino but bear experts would first need to see if it has pink-blue coloured eyes to confirm it

But until someone sees if its eyes are pink like an albino’s, or not, we cannot tell for sure.

Check out the video of them playing together:

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‘It’s not white, it’s got a caramel, light, sort of brownish sheen to its fur,’ De Jong told CBC.

Whistler bear expert Michael Allen said the white cub (above) is the first he has seen in the area in 23 years

‘I’ve repeatedly heard from various bear experts that its (fur) colour is the result of recessive genes from both parents. The mom is very much a black bear,’ he added.

Another theory is that it is actually a Kermode (or 'spirit' bear), a white variant of the North American black bear which is found in Canada

According to Michael Allen, who is an expert in whistler bears, this is the first time he has seen a white bear cub in this area in 23 years.

When the mating season begins, males sometimes kill cubs to force the mother to change her patterns of movement

“I have seen cubs ranging [from] black, reddish-brown, chocolate-brown to blonde (after summer bleaching of coat) but never have [I] seen in this population a cub with pelage this light to almost white”

Michael Allen
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Joe Kahlo

Written by Joe Kahlo

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