Determining factors that trigger hibernation in brown bears

Logger used: DST centi-T, temperature logger


Until now, little has been known about factors that trigger hibernation in wild brown bears (Ursus arctos). To help determine these factors researchers at The Scandinavian Brown Bear Research Project in Sweden used Star-Oddi‘s DST Centi-T logger to measure body temperature at different intervals.

Implanting the Loggers

The loggers were surgically implanted into 14 bears’ abdomens and removed once the animals were recaptured 1-2 years later.

Logging Body Temperature for up to a Year

During the study the loggers measured the bears' body temperature at intervals ranging from 1-30 minutes, depending on the stage of the study. The large memory of the DST centi-T logger made it possible to record the temperature for up to one year at as little as 3 minute intervals.

Different Drivers for Den Entry and Exit

The data provided by the DST centi-T loggers helped the researchers determine that den entry was primarily driven by environmental factors, as opposed to den exit which seemed to be based on physiological cues.


Additional information and references

  1. Evans AL, Singh NJ, Friebe A, Arnemo JM, Laske TG, Fröbert O, Svenson JE, Blanc S. Drivers of hibernation in brown bear (2016). Frontiers in Zoology 13:7.