Three bear cubs thrive in new home after being rescued from illegal traders in Vietnam


Three Asian black bear cubs are settling into their new home after they were rescued from a black market and spending a lifetime in captivity.

The first cub, little Mochi, was saved in the northern Vietnamese province of Son La when a family found out he was about to be illegally smuggled. They called the Four Paws animal welfare organisation on May 18 last year.

Two other cubs, Nikko and Nara, were rescued in Lai Chau province on the Vietnam border with China on July 21, 2020.

Mochi, Nikko and Nara were all just a few months old when they were saved from Vietnam’s illegal wildlife trade and taken to their new home at the Ninh Binh Bear Sanctuary.

The trio was given intensive care treatment to recover from the stressful first few months of their lives and to be able to continue their healthy development.

According to Four Paws, the cubs will have to remain in the sanctuary indefinitely since they are unlikely to survive in the wild.

Today, the ‘three musketeers’ as staff call them, are doing great and are very active.

A recent report by Four Paws said: ‘Although she is the smallest, Mochi is also the boss of the group. She explores any new objects offered to the cubs with a lot of confidence and fun.

‘Nara is the shy one, but doing really well with the other two. Although Nikko is a male and weighs nearly double than Mochi, he is afraid of nearly everything new. The other day he was even scared of peanuts.’

The Ninh Binh Bear Sanctuary in Vietnam was founded in December 2016 and has since become a home to over 30 rescued Asiatic black bears. Its capacity will increase to house up to a 100 bears in the near future.

Vietnam’s illegal wildlife trade is a billion-dollar industry that takes animals from the wild that are then bred in captivity and eventually sold for profit.

However, things are slowly taking a turn for the better, as major steps being taken to protect wild animals from being illegally traded.

Shortly after Nikko and Nara were rescued from an illegal trader, Vietnam announced a ban of the import and trade of wild animals and their parts under a new Directive. Action is being taken to stop online sale of these animals as well.