The new bear in town is curious, daring and incredibly charming—meet Andean bear Brienne! This fall, she joined her grandmother Billie Jean and beau-to-be Quito at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo. She arrived in Washington, D.C., Sept. 9 from the Queens Zoo in New York and is getting acquainted with her new surroundings and neighbors. Learn all about her personality and quirks in this Q+A with keeper Sara Colandrea.
How would you describe Brienne’s personality?
Just like people, each of our Andean bears has their own unique personality. They are so fun to get to know! It takes some time to develop a relationship with an animal and truly know their personality, and Brienne is no exception. When she first arrived, Brienne was cautiously curious and aloof. In exploring her habitat, though, her curiosity got the better of any fear she may have had. Now that she has settled in, she is much more daring. We often see her running along the edges of the rockwork in her habitat or taking a nap way up high in the tree canopy. From these two vantage points, she can see her grandmother Billie Jean—the “queen bee”—and our young gentleman, Quito.