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Photos and text by Jocelyn Stokes
Over here at the centre the bear crew can’t help but take a keen liking to a trio of young sun bears who may have actually been acrobats in a past life. While one is hanging upside down from the ceiling with its head arched back and legs flailing in the air, another will be swinging though the air in a tire, whilst the other is usually balancing stealthily in the corner, arms straight up, or perhaps tearing open a coconut. They’re a regular riot to observe with their overflowing abundance of character and youthful antics! Deemed the ‘three amigos’ by a troupe of loyal volunteers from New Zealand, these three bears, Jelita, Lawa and Cerah, truly delight in each other’s company. “The reason they get along so well,” explains Wai Pak, the onsite Educational Officer, “is because they are so young. At their age they need playmates. They all happen to be the same age, as well, and they have grown up in captivity, so they are particularly fond of each other!”
It’s a truly enjoyable sight to behold when a group of young wild, animals with a rather unfortunate past can be helped to live in such contentment. And, why not? These bears are blessed with more love and attention than most creatures could dream of having. Although their living space in not quite adequate yet, these bears are still receiving the utmost care. Through the hard work and dedication of the small BSBCC staff, along with the fresh, motivated energy of the volunteer groups, these bears receive healthy nourishment, instinctual stimulation, and well-cared for environments. All the bears have to worry about is how they’ll break open their next coconut and even that doesn’t seem to challenge them for too long.