Bear may be beyond recovery
California Department of Fish and Game officials aren’t optimistic about the health of a baby black bear taken from Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care Wednesday.
Fish and Game Senior Wildlife Biologist John Carlson said the 3-month-old, 15-pound cub may have nerve and kidney damage.
“It’s been through some rough times,” Carlson said. “We’re doing everything we can to take care of the bear.”
Carlson said assessing the health and temperament of orphan bears is difficult when the origins and circumstances by which the bear came to Fish and Game are vague.
BEAR League Director Ann Bryant said the cub was dropped off at Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care Friday, but the people who found it were unwilling to give their names.
Bryant said the bear underwent surgery to remove foxtails from its eyes and was closely cared for all weekend.
She said she was discouraged Fish and Game took the cub just when its health was improving.
“They came and pretty much took him right out from under us,” Bryant said. “Fish and Game are not wildlife rehabilitators. When they come and take these animals from us and don’t think we know what we’re doing it’s very frustrating.”
Bryant said the bear was so wild it would have been a good candidate for rehabilitation. She said she hoped Fish and Game would eventually give the cub back to Tahoe Wildlife Care to be raised and released this winter.
“We’re not going to give up,” Bryant said. “They know we’re watching so maybe they’ll do the right thing.”
Carlson said the bear still has to be observed before Fish and Game determines its fate.
If the cub is too sick, Carlson said it could be humanely euthanized.
Orphan cubs that come to Fish and Game are either put into a rehabilitation facility, placed into a captive setting like a zoo or euthanized.
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