The San Diego Humane Society announced that the three orphaned California black bear cubs who transferred to the Ramona Wildlife Center about a month ago have passed their health exam and will be held until they are ready to re-enter the wild.
Officials said that the cubs have passed their health exam and are housed together to grow strong until they are ready for the wild. Since their transfer, the cubs have played together and have investigated their habitat while learning to forage for food.
Two cubs, a brother, and a sister came from Valley of Falls in the San Bernardino Mountains on July 9 and July 12. The third came from Lake Arrowhead on July 15. The California Department of Fish and Wild Life rescued all three cubs.
A civilian killed the mother of the first two cubs after attempting to break into a cabin in Valley Falls. The nonprofit said the mother was conditioned to seek food from humans.
The third cub is unrelated to the siblings. Officials believe a car hit the cub's mother near Lake Arrowhead.
The SDHS Project Wildlife Veterinary team anesthetized all three bears on Aug.4 for their first physical exam, which included blood work, radiographs of every limb and portion of the body, a check of their teeth, and measuring of their paw pads, body length, and width.
The wildlife veterinary team also microchipped the bears.
All three bears were in excellent health, and moved to the full-outside enclosure for the first time, reported the nonprofit. The outdoor enclosure prepares the bears to return to the wild.
“It is so important that these bears do not get comfortable around humans and associate us people with food,” said Andy Blue, campus director of San Diego Humane Society’s Ramona Wildlife Center. “For their own safety and the safety of the public, we want them to avoid humans at all cost, and learn how to forage and hunt so that they can survive on their own in the wild.”
Each year, SDHS treats more than 13,000 injured, orphaned, and sick wild animals a second chance. The newly erected Ramona Campus specializes in caring for native apex predators and birds of prey, including hawks, owls, eagles, coyotes, bears, bobcats, and, under a special pilot authorization, mountain lions.