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PICS: After life on a bile farm, rescued bears enjoy the sun with their first new friend

14 July 2017

Bazan (1)

See moon bears Bazan and Wendles, recently rescued from a Vietnamese bear bile farm enjoy the outdoors and make a new friend.

Just three months after a dramatic rescue from a bear bile farm in Gia Lai province in April this year, Bazan and Wendles are relishing their new lives.

Caged side by side for a decade, the two animals bear hugged when they finally “met” at Animals Asia’s sanctuary and have amazed their carers with their fearless, inquisitive natures.

Often, bears rescued from the bile industry are so traumatised that they find it difficult to adjust to larger spaces and new experiences. Some have even been known to marvel at seeing the sky for the first time.

But Bazan and Wendles have taken to the open space with absolute enthusiasm – particularly Bazan whose fun-loving nature has captured the hearts, not only of Wendles, but all her new carers too.

Bazan and Rae (2)

Animals Asia Bear Manager Sarah van Herpt said:

“Bazan is a rock star. She is constantly moving, playing, exploring and making everyone around her fall in love with her beautiful nature.

“Her outgoing personality has helped the more timid Wendles adjust very well to all the new experiences she’s encountered since their rescue which is a gorgeous example of how important relationships can be to a rescued bear’s recovery from extreme cruelty.”

The two friends are sharing their new enclosure with sanctuary old-timer Rae, who was rescued from a plastics company in Hanoi in 2012.


Animals Asia’s Vietnam Bear and Vet Team Director Heidi Quine said:

“Since Rae arrived in their lives, the more spritely Bazan and Wendles have been mischievously taking turns to sneak up on Rae while she sleeps to see who could get closest without getting grumbled at!

“Obviously Bazan and Wendles are much closer but the interactions with Rae have been positive, and hopefully her calm nature will help the more energetic newcomers settle into the sanctuary, show them there is nothing to fear – and maybe she’ll even point out the best foraging spots.” 

To date, Animals Asia has rescued 186 bears in Vietnam – mostly from the bear bile industry – while 170 bears continue to live on site at the world-class facility.

Wendles (1)Rae 1