Taara and Lily saved from bear baiting
Two more female Asiatic black bears have been surrendered by their owners and brought to the WSPA-funded sanctuary.
This article was written when we were called the World Society for the Protection of Animals (WSPA). Find out about our name change
With the help of our partners, the Bioresource Research Centre (BRC), two more female Asiatic black bears have been surrendered by their owners and brought to the WSPA-funded sanctuary in Pakistan.
10 year old Taara arrived at the Balkasar sanctuary from Bahawalpur area of Punjab province after a long journey. The BRC staff found Taara to be relatively healthy, although mildly anaemic. Taara’s black fur is rough and coarse and her muzzle displays the scars of her past in the baiting arena. When staff first examined her they found she weighed 117kg, which was unusual as she had lacked proper nourishment for most of her life. Taara now loves all the food she’s been given, especially chicken which she tasted for the first time.
Before her owner surrendered Taara she had spent her entire life being scared, kept in terrible conditions. Taara was frightened every time her owner came close to her because she associated him with having to fight for her life. Pain, fear, and anger were the only feelings she had been allowed to experience.
Preparing for a new life
Taara is now full of joy and energy and is impatient to be allowed out of the quarantine area. She seems eager to explore the sanctuary’s grounds and meet the other bears. When it’s time for her to be released into the main enclosure it looks as though she will become a firm fixture at the sanctuary’s many water pools as she loves water and takes a bath twice a day.
After a long drive from Bahawalnagar district of Punjab Province, Lily finally arrived at the sanctuary. On her arrival, the BRC staff offered her food and water in order to settle her from her long journey. After examining her they found she had wounds to her body and scars on her muzzle. It was necessary to put her to sleep for a few hours to remove her nose ring and the rope tied around her neck. When Lily woke up, the staff felt relieved, and enjoyed watching her awake without her binding – it was such a surprise for her to be free.
In the quarantine area, Lily was unsure how to behave at first, but after a short while she started to relax into her surroundings. When staff felt that Lily was at ease they decided to introduce her to Taara. Not used to other bears, Lily was aggressive towards her at first, growling and keeping to her side of the enclosure, but gradually they got used to being in each other’s company. Now, Lily follows Taara everywhere and they are having a lot of fun together!
A second chance
Lily seems very satisfied with her new life; apples and bread are her favourite foods and she gets very excited at meal times. Never having access to nutritious and fresh foods in her previous life, her glossy fur is a sign that her health is improving and as soon as she is fully recovered she will be released into the main enclosure of the sanctuary to live out the rest of her days in peace.