Here's how you're helping over 100 bears in Romania
Thanks to the continued generosity of our wonderful donors, the bears at Libearty Bear Sanctuary in Romania are being well taken care through the pandemic and resulting lockdown that initially dried up the sanctuary's income
"Thankfully, all of the bears are healthy and well fed. AMP has even been able to rescue a couple of bear cubs and an elderly bear from a zoo in recent weeks. This is all thanks to the support of our wonderful donors." Victor Watkins
Caring for a bear means first and foremost providing large amounts of food daily. Bears require about 10kg of food per day which is sufficient to keep them well fed. And they need a mixture of food such as fresh fruits, vegetables and meat or fish.
With 106 resident bears at the Libearty Bear Sanctuary, that’s 1,060kg per day, 7,420kg per week and 381,600kg per year – that’s a lot of food.
The bears may also require medication at times. Many of the resident bears were rescued from terrible conditions and some require more vet care and medications than others. For example, there is a very old bear at the sanctuary who needs constant care and medication for arthritis and digestive problems. Most of the other bears don’t need vet care as they are happily living undisturbed as they would in the wild.
Thanks to our incredible supporters, we have provided food, medicine for the bears, and we are supporting the Sanctuaries’ costs for up to nine months. As we build resilience during this difficult time, the Sanctuary will continue its good work and the resident bears will remain well-cared for throughout the pandemic.
Thank you to our incredible supporters for caring about these bears who have already gone through enough.
Victor Watkins, our global wildlife advisor expresses his thanks: “Our donors have really provided a lifeline for the bears at an incredibly difficult period. The sanctuary was receiving no income from visitors due to the travel restrictions in place. Usually at this time of year they would have received hundreds of visitors a week.
Thankfully, all of the bears are healthy and well fed. AMP has even been able to rescue a couple of bear cubs and an elderly bear from a zoo in recent weeks. This is all thanks to the support of our wonderful donors.”
Want to meet the bears you're helping? You just might get a chance if you watch the live stream below. Depending on the time of day, you may find the bears roaming around the grass, getting fed some tasty snacks, or splashing and playing in the pool.
These bears that once suffered immensely by being caged, beaten and starved for entertainment purposes, are now able to live peacefully with one another thanks to supporters like you. Just click the video below and continue reading to learn more about these brilliant animals.
Why should we all care about bears?
These powerful animals, associated with strength and good luck, leap out of our stories and legends, light up our art, our religious and national symbols, and… our toy shops. But did you know that bears are incredibly intelligent, have excellent memories, can use tools and feel intense grief? Here’s a look at their extraordinary lives.
A big sweet tooth
Remember a certain stuffed bear that loved honey? Well he isn’t alone. Bears have had a sweet tooth for longer than you may expect. You see, bears have roamed our mountains, forests, jungles and arctic spaces for millions of years. Researchers reported the fossilized remains of a 3.5-million-year-old bear on Ellesmere Island, in Canada’s north in 2017. And just like its modern relatives this bear had a sweet tooth. The researchers found evidence of tooth decay – probably caused by eating large amounts of sweet berries.
Researchers from Washington State University found evidence that bears are capable of planning and thinking things through. The researchers hung doughnuts just out of the reach of captive grizzly bears and left tree stumps and plastic boxes nearby. Eventually most of the bears used the stumps and boxes as footstools to reach the sweet treats.
Wild brown bears have also been recorded picking up rocks and using them to scratch their itchy faces. Look closely enough at our livestream and you may find a few itchy bears using the readily available rocks by the pond!
Bears use around 11 different sounds to communicate, including growling, grunting, clacking, huffing, barking and moaning. There is plenty of research out there aiming to determine what these sounds mean - researchers have found that moaning can mean both contentment and distress.
Body language is important too. Workers at Libearty Bear Sanctuary report that rescued bears jump up and down with happiness when they smell their favourite foods or see their favourite people.
A mother’s love
Mothers and cubs are extremely close; mothers will fight to the death to protect their young from predators. They teach cubs how to forage for food and protect themselves by climbing trees. The cubs also have great fun playing with their mother and siblings. Researchers have found that the more brown bear cubs play, the more likely they are to survive into adulthood.
Sadly, many cubs, like the recently rescued Kenya and Bamse at Libearty Bear Sanctuary, are left to fend for themselves after being separated from their moms. The staff at the Libearty do their best to care for the cubs, and thanks to the many pools and large forests, once these cubs are healthy and strong, there is plenty of space for them to play and run around with each other.
Bears are threatened worldwide through habitat loss, hunting and through poaching for use in entertainment and traditional Asian medicine. Helping bears in our partner sanctuaries is a great way to ensure bears who cannot be released back into the wild are cared for and given a good life, but still we need to ensure that the use of these amazing animals for products stops. This is why we are calling for a ban on the wildlife tradewith the help of supporters like you!
Moving the world for bears
With your help we will stop the cruelty that the wildlife trade for medicine and entertainment inflicts on the world’s bears. With your support we can keep these magnificent animals in the wild where they belong.