(Greater Vancouver Zoo/Special to the Aldergrove Star)

VIDEO: Trio of orphaned Alberta grizzly bear cubs find new home at Vancouver zoo

The Alberta cubs’ mother was killed by hunters and would have otherwise been euthanized, zoo says

Greater Vancouver Zoo in Aldergrove is now a permanent home to three grizzly bear cubs, who would have otherwise been euthanized it said.

The trio – one male and two female – was orphaned when their mother was shot and killed by a poacher in southwest Alberta, animal care manager Menita Prasad said. 

Alberta Fish and Wildlife officers first brought them into the Calgary Zoo in early May after agroup of scientists, wildlife conservationists and animal advocates sent a letter to Alberta government, urging it to rehabilitate the cubs so they can be released back into the wild.

“The Calgary Zoo saved them and took good care of them until two weeks ago,” said general manager Serge Lussier, who said the zoo ran out of space for the six-month-old cubs.

Lussier accepted the zoo’s offer to have them relocated permanently to the Aldergrove zoo, in their own one-acre enclosure.

“The grizzly bear triplets are adapting well to their new surroundings and are having fun discovering their new habitat,” said Lussier.

“On the first day they found the pond,” he remarked, which they have swam in the past few days.

“In the wild, on average, grizzly bear cubs will stay with their mothers for up to three years. So there is a lot that they need to learn,” Prasad explained.

These learned skills include hunting, hiding, foraging – basically how to survive on their own, she continued.

As such, zoo staff will need to monitor the cubs’ growth and provide them with special care over the next few years.

Prasad mentioned because of human intervention that took place at an early age, it is not ideal for the cubs to be released into wild.

Currently, the little grizzlies are on a mix of formula and some solid forms of nutrition, including dog chow.

“They love each other even though they do scrap every once and a while,” Prasad related.

Families can now enter to name one of the three cubs online at gvzoo.com.

Winners will get a free year’s pass to the zoo and a behind-the-scenes experience with the cubs.

RELATED: Orphaned baby black bears being raised at Greater Vancouver Zoo

The Greater Vancouver Zoo is home to another grizzly bear, a female named Shadow, who is now 22 years old.

“We have the expertise and the longevity of care to do this,” Lussier lauded.

The 120-acre facility is also home to three black bears from Alaska – which also first came to the facility as cubs.

Aldergrove

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

(Greater Vancouver Zoo/Special to the Aldergrove Star)

(Sarah Grochowski/Aldergrove Star)

(Greater Vancouver Zoo/Special to the Aldergrove Star)

Just Posted

Quick work prevents potential wildfire disaster near Lytton

Blaze sparked by a suspected impaired driver who collided with a hydro pole

UPDATE: Wildfire northeast of Clinton put out by BC Wildfire Service

Fire at 51 Mile Creek suspected to be lightning-caused

QUIZ: How much do you know about British Columbia?

On this B.C. Day long weekend, put your knowledge of our province to the test

No new COVID-19 cases for the first time in weeks: Interior Health

Hospitalization also down to zero across the region

Fire chief disturbed by behaviour of drivers following fatality

Collision on Highway 1 south of Ashcroft left two people dead

B.C. records 146 new COVID-19 cases through long weekend

More that 28 people tested positive for the virus each day since Friday

Canucks tame Minnesota Wild 4-3 to even NHL qualifying series

J.T. Miller leads Vancouver with goal and an assist

COVID-19 vaccine efforts provide hope but no silver bullet to stop pandemic: Tam

There are more than two dozen vaccines for COVID-19 in clinical trials around the world

Interior Health reports nine new cases of COVID-19, 149 linked to Kelowna

Nine new cases were reported in the Interior Health region over the long weekend’s four reporting periods

Two people die in propane heated outdoor shower near Princeton

Couple was attending a long weekend gathering

Study shines light on what makes LGBTQ+ youth feel safe in a community

The study goes beyond looking at school or family supports

Alberta to require masks at schools this fall, but still no mandate in B.C.

B.C. students are also set to return to classrooms in September

B.C. to allow customers to buy cannabis online for in-store pickup at private shops

Age verification will still be required inside the store

Interior Health expands COVID-19 testing access in Kelowna

First-come, first-serve, no-appointment-needed testing centre opens in downtown Kelowna

Most Read