Black bear No. 56—denned in the Chippewa National Forest near Marcell—is the oldest of its species ever recorded in the wild. Minnesota Department of Natural Resources biologists know the sow is 39 because they counted seven rings in a tooth they extracted from her in 1981, when she was first captured and radio-collared. That reliable aging technique indicated the bear was born in 1974. Sam Cook in the Duluth News-Tribune.