As first impressions go, this one went beary well.
On Wednesday, the Assiniboine Park Zoo introduced three-year-old male polar bear, Storm, to Hudson, another polar bear who is already on exhibit.
By all accounts, the first face-to-face meeting was a success.
"Storm is a great bear and we’re very excited for him to meet the public this weekend," said Dr. Brian Joseph, director of Zoological Operations at Assiniboine Park Zoo. "(On Wednesday) we introduced him to Hudson for the first time, and there’s no doubt that the two of them are going to be great friends."
This Saturday, Storm will be ready to meet the public for the first time. Zoo hours are from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily.
Over the next few weeks the two bears will continue to get to know each other gradually through a number of introductions; however, they will be housed in separate enclosures.
Storm arrived at the zoo from Churchill on Oct. 10 after he chased and cornered a man in town in September. He was identified by Manitoba Conservation and Water Stewardship as a candidate for transfer to the zoo.
The zoo’s International Polar Bear Conservation Centre also has two polar bear cubs, both less than a year old, who are still in quarantine but could also be on exhibit before Christmas.