Mystery of Non-Mating Polar Bears Cleared in Japan

November 27, 2008

Hokkaido, Japan (ChattahBox) — Japanese zookeepers had been puzzled for the past few months over the lack of chemistry between two polar bears. They have now cleared the mystery identifying both of them to be females.

Tsuyoshi, a four-year-old “male” polar bear, and his 11-year-old female partner, Kurumi, have been living together since June at the Kushiro Municipal Zoo in Hokkaido, northern Japan. The Japanese zookeepers had been puzzled during their breeding season. Tsuyoshi, the four year old “male” has not gone into the rut even during his mating season. The zoo said in a statement that that they got suspicious about the bears observing their behaviors. Later when the zookeepers put Tsuyoshi under anesthetic for a gender check up, they discovered that he was actually a “she.”

Experts commented that it is difficult to determine the gender in polar bears at a young age as their organs are covered with hair. Tsuyoshi is a very common name for boys in Japan but the zoo officials have refused to change to a more feminine name. Tsuyoshi is extremely popular at the zoo.


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