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Gov. Patrick Joins Black Bear Cub Survey

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Governor Patrick and Secretary Sullivan participate in black bear cub survey in South Deerfield. (Photo credit: Eric Haynes / Governor’s Office)

Governor Patrick and Secretary Sullivan participate in black bear cub survey in South Deerfield. (Photo credit: Eric Haynes / Governor’s Office)

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BOSTON (AP) — Gov. Deval Patrick has joined in an annual state survey of black bear cubs in Massachusetts.

On Monday Patrick was with a team that discovered a pair of four-to-six-week-old cubs. The cubs, both male, weighed in at about six pounds each.

The cubs’ mother is one of 16 radio-collared bears believed to have given birth this winter.

The survey allows researchers to check on the health of the state’s black bear population. Black bear cubs are typically born mid-January through February.

While newborn cubs are too small to tag or collar, wildlife officials recorded each cub’s physical condition, weight and gender.

Biologists also checked the physical condition of mother bears.

When the study began in 1970, there were about 100 black bears in Massachusetts. The population has since grown to about 3,000 bears.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

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