Armstrong and Buzz are first bears to be rescued to our new sanctuary

10 October 2023

On 2 October 2023, Animals Asia made “one giant leap for moonkind” by rescuing the first bears to our new sanctuary in Bach Ma, Vietnam. 

The new sanctuary signals the end of bear bile farming in Vietnam. It will be home to the last remaining few hundred bears that still live on bile farms across the country.

We’d only just completed construction on the quarantine area and the first double bear house when we received the call that a bear bile farmer in the notorious bear bile farming hotspot of Phung Thuong had agreed to release his bears into our care.

The farmer told us he’d had the bears since 2002. For over two decades they had suffered repeated bile extraction and languished in tiny, barren, dark cages.

No Ordinary Bear Rescue

This rescue represents so much more than a new life for these bears.

Because the moment these two moon bears landed in our new sanctuary marked the beginning of the end of bear bile farming in Vietnam - an industry that has pushed this iconic species to the edge of extinction in the country.

We've nick-named these two beautiful bears Buzz and Armstrong after the brave astronauts who took that historic "giant leap" during the first moon landing in 1969.

Just as Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong explored uncharted territory beyond our world, these bears are on the brink of exploring a new, safe world free from cruelty.

The countdown is on

And now the countdown is on to rescue every single moon bear still trapped on bile farms across the country.

But we can’t do it without your help. 

With nearly 300 bears still trapped in cages on bile farms, we desperately need your support. Not just to rescue these bears, but to look after them for the rest of their days with nutritious food, veterinary care, and all the love they need and deserve.

This is our moon bear mission. Together we can and will end bear bile farming in Vietnam.

Read more: Jill's Blog