Skandinavisk Dyrepark in Kolind Denmark posted yesterday that Nuuk had died sometime this winter, possibly related to a flu-like illness. He was 25, a senior bear.
The park had some wistful parting words on the loss of Nuuk, saying that "Nuuk always had his own opinion about the course of things. The rest of the polar bear residents had great respect for Nuuk, and it was not something he needed to enforce. They moved completely by themselves when he came walking. Nuuk will definitely be missed."
Twins Nordman and Ilka were born December 2, 1993 in Kolmarden. Their father was Imarec, and their mother was C.W., an American-born bear.
Nuuk's brother, the late Manasse, who lived in Ranua Finland, was father of Ranzo and Sisu. Nuuk was also brother to the late Yukihime of Yokohama; and Baffin who lives with daughter Momo in Hamamatsu Zoo. Through his father Imarec, Nuuk was half brother to Marissa in Italy, and the famous actress polar bear Agee in Canada.
And of course through his sister Ilka, Nuuk was uncle to Siku, Nuno and Nanu.
|Nanok left, Nuuk right
In 1998, 5 year old wildborn cub Huggies came from Ouwehands Zoo, Rhenen, the Netherlands, to Kolmarden. Huggies became acquainted with handsome young Nordman, as he was called at the time. The result was a beautiful cub, Freedom, born December 1, 2001, When baby Freedom was just three months old, Huggies and the cub returned to the brand new polar bear exhibit at Ouwehands.
|Nuuk's daughter Freedom and her cubs in Ouwehands
In January of 2006, 12 year old twins Nordman and Ilka moved from Kolmarden, and at the same time, four year old Nanok, born in Belgium, came from Ouwehands to Skandinavisk Dyrepark. The three were the new park's first polar bear residents, finding themselves in a spacious and natural polar bear paradise.
|The bridge over the lake at Skandinavisk Dyrepark
Skandinavisk Dyrepark is unlike any other zoo. The visitors can watch the bears romp and play in huge meadows and a magnificent meandering wooden footbridge provides a close but safe vantage point to view the big furry residents as they swim in the lake.
|Nanok in water, Nuuk on land
In Denmark, Nordman was renamed Nuuk. It seems that someone decided Nuuk's breeding days were over so he was neutered, maybe so the boy bears would get along better.
Young Nanok had been brought to the park from Ouwehands as a mate for Ilka, and as a friend for Nuuk. The boys really hit it off and the relationship continued right up until Nuuk's death.
|Ilka in water, Nuuk on land
Through his daughter Freedom, Nuuk left quite a legacy as grandfather to Sprinter (now in Hanover), Sesi (in Mulhouse France), Taiko (in France), Akiak (in Rostock) and Sura (still in Ouwehands), and great grandfather to Miss Nanuk in Mulhouse.