Christie and I are now nearing the end of our UK Roadshow. It’s been exhausting, but wonderful and I’ll update you about it soon.
I’ve just arrived in Swindon, England with Christie Yang, our China Relations Director, and we’re starting our UK Roadshow here tonight. Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll be giving back-to-back presentations to update our wonderful British supporters on the latest China bear rescue and earthquake relief efforts – so I hope you understand if I don’t have much time for blogging.
I’m so sorry to bring you the news that another of our latest batch of rescued bears has died – one more bear that just couldn’t rise above the torture and succumbed. Since he arrived, Plug has featured in almost every vet report as being a worrisome bear and the team has been battling so hard to bring him through. We always felt that even though the remaining bears of the original 28 were getting better, they were by no means out of the woods yet.
The plight of the bears on the farms remains unclear, though our General Manager/Government Liaison Toby Zhang has tried every effort to obtain information. We have also offered help through the Sichuan Forestry. The officials were grateful, but insisted that the farms are under control now, and didn’t need our help. Taking matters into his own hands this past weekend, Toby paid an unofficial visit to two farms in Dujiangyan.
Watermelon’s turn on the surgery table today. This sweet and rather dopey bear has broken and won everyone’s heart from when he first arrived. Although his mobility has improved, it’s pretty certain now that he is blind - but my, it has to be said, he is a truly magnificent boy.
It’s always a nail-biting time to see one of our new bears laid out on the surgery table. Our vet team busily buzz around preparing for surgery and re-checking on problems picked up on during the previous emergency health-check from when the bears first arrived at the end of March.
Some really good news at last! Three new utterly beautiful bears have arrived at our Vietnam sanctuary thanks to the prompt action of the Vietnamese authorities. This brings to 12 the total number of bears taken in to our new sanctuary.
As promised, a photo of little Pi, who we plucked from the River Pi that runs through our Moon Bear Rescue Centre in Chengdu. Here he is with Eric and the security team that saved him.
As the earthquake outreach goes on I know that many people are wondering about the health of our new bears. Naturally we’ve had to postpone all but the most urgent of surgeries as our vet team really don’t want a sleeping bear on the table as another aftershock hits. (The latest on Monday afternoon literally rocked the chairs during our meeting.)