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).
Vietnam sun bears ease into their new outdoor routine
Our Vietnam bears recently got their first taste of the great outdoors in the two beautiful, semi-natural enclosures attached to the double bear house that opened on May 14 at our Moon Bear Rescue Centre in Tam Dao National Park. One enclosure is for the sun bears, the other for the moon bears.
On the “sun’s side” we have introduced David and Lamma (previously nicknamed Munchkin) to the wonders of the natural world. David came out with gusto initially, but found things to be a little overwhelming, so when he eventually regained the safety of the dens, he stayed inside for the next couple of days, only poking his head out occasionally!
Feisty little Lamma was just the opposite. She did venture out on the first day, though not too far, and certainly didn’t investigate the entire perimeter as David did in his initial adventure. It took her a few forays to extend the distance she explored, but since she’s got going, there’s been no stopping her. She is confident and adventurous and has discovered the art of climbing trees, and rapidly scaling back down them as if on a fireman’s pole!
David has now grown in confidence and joins Lamma outside each day, foraging, climbing – though not as skillfully as Lamma – and rolling around in the grass. As we have had a lot of rain, Lamma and David often resemble the colour of mud, as they spend so much time wrestling on the soggy grass!
As sun bears and moon bears have quite different temperaments, they will not be integrated into the same enclosures. However, some interesting interaction has been noticed in the new bear house now that they are housed next door to each other. One of Lamma’s favourite pastimes is to harass the moon bears she has contact with through the den bars: she enjoys swatting at either Marvin, Lexi, Mama or Moggy. Marvin and Lexi think it’s a great game, being two rough-and-tumble moon bear boys, ready for any action. But Mama and Moggy, our dainty ladies, are not so impressed with all the attention from Lamma, giving her all the more reason to sit at the bars staring and poking!
The integrations continue in Vietnam and gradually all the bears will be released into the semi-natural enclosures. Keep checking in for news of these exciting new developments!
Lamma concentrates on retrieving something tasty from a tree.
David and Lamma tumble and play in the damp grass.