Ben Kilham has studied bears for the past 25-years, during this time he has rehabilitated a number of them.
As of this past fall (2018), Kilham has received 70 cubs (black bear), as of Monday there are a total of 64 on site of the ‘Kilham Bear Center’ in Lyme, New Hampshire.
“This year we were kind of overrun. As of Monday, we have a total of 64 black bears,” said Kilham.
In a typical year, Kilham says he receives between 20 & 30 bears during the course of the winter. Kilham said this winter was difficult.
What is leading to this issue? This past fall had a combination of limited tree nuts, meaning no food for the animal. Plus there was a high kill rate according to Kilham.
“The ones (cubs) coming in right now are 16-months old, but they are only weighing between 8 & 10 pounds,” said Kilham. In fact, they should weigh 40 pounds.
Kilham along with his wife and sister run the 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
Their mission is to return the bears to their natural habitat, the forest, once they are up to weight and reach the age of 18-months.
The Kilham Bear Center is now seeking monetary donations, that will fund a second housing enclosure.
“The new buildings estimate is $253,000,” he said. “We still have a long way to go.”