Heartwarming footage shows how two rare bears who were poached as cubs by animal traffickers received a thorough health check.
Footage shows one of the bears being taken to the vet where he undergoes a thorough health check after being anesthetized. He can then be seen fully conscious again after the medical examination.
The video was obtained from Perth Zoo in Australia, which released a statement saying: “Sun bears Bopha and Jamran are former victims of the illegal wildlife trade, but have found their forever home at Perth Zoo. Perth after being rescued by Free the Bears.”
Free the Bears, also known as Free the Bears Fund, is an Australian wildlife charity.
Perth Zoo also said: “They’ve had a rough start to life, but regular medical checks help them stay in top shape, as vets can monitor their body condition, dental health, joint mobility and more.
“We are happy to say that both bears look healthy for their age.”
The zoo added: “Having been rescued from the illegal wildlife trade as cubs, our animal caretakers are closely monitoring the health and well-being of the two sun bears.
“The bears have individualized wellness plans consisting of enrichment activities, specialized diets and of course, a scheduled visit to the veterinary hospital every two years.
“This month, the bears had their general checkup under anesthesia where teams were able to get up close to examine their body condition, dental health, joint mobility and collect pathological samples for testing.”
Senior Veterinarian Rebecca Vaughan-Higgins said: “These scheduled health checks are a great way for us to do a thorough health check on our animals.
“While we have no concerns, it is always helpful to have x-rays and blood tests to use as a baseline for any potential health issues in the future.
“The bears look healthy for their age, but both needed a good dental checkup and polish to get rid of the tartar buildup.
“Overall, the procedures for Jamran and Bopha went smoothly with no health issues to report and they recovered well from the anesthesia.”
The zoo said the two bears were taken into care in 2007 after they were poached as cubs. The zoo said Bopha was found “alive as an illegal pet while Jamran was found tied up in a restaurant and on the menu”.
Vaughan-Higgins said: “X-rays and mobility checks are particularly important for Jamran as he suffered long-term leg injuries from being tied up prior to his rescue.”
She added: “We like to keep a close eye on his paws to make sure he has no pain or mobility issues that might need to be addressed.”
The zoo said: “Animal carers at Perth Zoo have worked hard over the past 15 years to develop strong bonds with our bears, while providing them with a lifestyle that closely mimics what they should have had. in the wild. And after having had a terrible start to life, Bopha and Jamran are among the lucky ones.
“Unfortunately, many wild bears continue to fall victim to illegal poaching and compete for dwindling resources due to habitat loss.”
Sun Bear (Helarctos malayanus) are listed as “Vulnerable” on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species.
Found in the rainforests of Southeast Asia, their population is believed to have dropped by 35% in the past 30 years due to wildlife trafficking and habitat fragmentation, according to the expert group. IUCN bears.
This story was provided to Newsweek by Zenger News.