years ago this April, Jill Robinson first walked onto a bear bile farm. On that day in April 1993, Jill could have walked away, but she chose to act and do what she could. Today, you also have a choice. If everyone reading this donated just US$20, it would pay for the care of over 150 bears at our China sanctuary for a full year. Please help us celebrate 20 years of progress. Donate US$20 today (or whatever you can afford).
On 19 August 2010, three more bears were rescued from Vietnam’s bile industry and transferred to our Moon Bear Rescue Centre at Tam Dao.
In early May 2010, the Quang Ninh Police stopped a truck heading for the Vietnam/China border with three unchipped/unregistered moon bears. The driver claimed that he was only delivering the bears to the border point, and that he had picked up one bear from Ha Tay (30km west of Hanoi and a notorious bear farming area) and two bears from Ha Long Bay, Quang Ninh (probably from one of the six bear farms that we’ve been targeting for the past three years). An investigation failed to reveal which farms the bears had come from.
Despite our request that the bears come directly to us, they were transferred in mid-May to the government’s Soc Son Rescue Centre. We began the politics of requesting confiscation into our care and, three months later, the Director of Soc Son informed our Vietnam Director Tuan Bendixsen that he had received the order from the Hanoi Municipal Government agreeing to the transfer.
The three bears await our arrival at the Soc Son Recsue Centre.
Vet Kirsty health-checked all three bears on arrival. Here are her notes:
“Having visited Soc Son multiple times over the past few months and seen these three bears still languishing in their farm cages due to a lack of space, we were all thrilled to welcome V066 Clover, V067 Soo and V068 Mary to our sanctuary at last. They arrived on Thursday in the heat of the day and were carefully unloaded under the supervision of Bear Worker Tuan (who, along with Tuan Bendixsen, did a fantastic job getting them here safely). We gave them all a quick anaesthetic and check over and transferred them to our cages.
First off the truck was Clover. An adult female, with a frantic and unusual stereotypic behaviour, which has resulted in her developing large thick calluses on her bottom. On examination she is in reasonably good condition and there are no major problems needing immediate attention. She has very thickened foot pads and severe tartar on her teeth. She will be scheduled for gall bladder removal once she completes her quarantine.
Next was a young lanky boy named Soo. Weighing just 72.5kg, he is very thin. He was quiet on the truck, preferring to just lie still as the cages were unloaded around him. On health-check he also has no serious abnormalities, but will also be scheduled for surgery once out of quarantine.
The last bear was Mary. Another lovely girl, young adult, with severe rub marks on her forehead. She was apparently confiscated for being unchipped but we found a microchip and thus know that she is about 9 years old, and originates from a bear farm in Ha Tay province. She is also quite thin, weighing just 80kg. She has thickened foot pads, tartar build up on her teeth, and some obvious fibrous thickening just cranial to her umbilicus - perhaps damage caused by bile extractions, and she will also be scheduled for surgery to remove gall bladder once she has finished quarantine.
All three bears have settled in well, with Mary already polishing off all the food we give her. The other two are more cautious and only eat small amounts very slowly so far.”