Found: Orphaned bear cub | SierraSun.com

Found: Orphaned bear cub

Joanna Hartman
Sierra Sun

Alex Close/Sierra SunA bear cub that was orphaned when a Tahoe City man shot at it's mother was trapped Wednesday night by BEAR League volunteers.

The 6-month-old bear cub that was orphaned Tuesday when its mother was shot at and fell from a tree in Tahoe City, has been found by animal advocates.

Twenty BEAR League volunteers helped trap the 40-pound cub Wednesday night after it was treed in Granlibakken.

“It was quite a circus,” said Ann Bryant, the nonprofit organization’s executive director. “We did not want him to run across the highway. That little booger resisted and he played and he had quite a time. But we knew he was so hungry.”

After its mother was killed at a residence near the wye in early Tuesday, the cub ran off toward the Tahoe City Golf Course. The BEAR League received several calls reporting sightings of the cub and placed a special trap at the course Tuesday ” to no avail.

But one night later the hungry cub was lured into the bear-safe trap.

“That’s his first meal since his mama had been killed,” Bryant said. “He’s just fine. He cried a little last night for his mom ” he’s definitely feeling lonely. But I think he knows he’s safe.”

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The cub is currently being held at the BEAR League headquarters.

The California Department of Fish and Game gave the BEAR League authority to capture the cub before turning it back over to the state for a medical exam.

“As soon as we can arrange for transport, we do have to bring him down to the wildlife investigations lab,” Bryant said. “And then hopefully he’ll be determined to be an appropriate candidate for rehab.”

If the cub does go to the rehabilitation center in South Lake Tahoe, Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care, he’ll join five other orphaned cubs. In February, when the cubs are 100 to 120 pounds and hibernating in bear pens, the animal groups, along with Fish and Game, will relocate the young bears to backwood hibernation dens.

The groups have helped rehabilitate 15 to 20 bears over the last several years.

“They’ve all done very well. They avoid humans and they don’t become garbage bears. All but one are still alive,” Bryant said.

BEAR League officials say the future for this bear looks bright.