Rescued brown bear released into wild after 13-month care in NW China

After 13 months of care, a rescued brown bear named Neng Neng was released back into the wild in Altai Mountains, northwest China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region, on June 30.

The young bear was found dying near a stream in the Altai Mountains in June last year by staff from the Altai Mountains State Forest Management Administration's Fuyun Branch.

"When we found the bear, half of its body was paralyzed. Because of insufficient feeding and rescue conditions at that time, we entrusted the Xinjiang Altay Nature Conservation Association to carry out treatment," said Muraman Munawar, director of the Fuyun Branch.

The association's staff soon developed a deep affection for Neng Neng, so they gave him the cute name. After the 13-month-long treatment, the bear has returned to a healthy state and grown to about 1.4 meters tall and 120 kilograms.

To help more bears like Neng Neng, the local nature conservation association has started a special "Wild Brown Bear Rescue and Release Program" to train the rescued to hunt and impart other necessary survival skills.

"This is the first time that we have tried to combine rescue and training prior to release. So far, it has yielded positive results. Before being released, Neng Neng got some training to master the ability to find food. Being about 1.5 years old, Neng Neng can learn very fast, which makes now the perfect timing for release," said Chu Wenwen, head of the Xinjiang Altay Nature Conservation Association.

According to staff, to ensure that Neng Neng will have sufficient food while transitioning back to the wild, staff still set up feeding sites and install infrared cameras to monitor the bear's status. In this way, the bear could adapt to the wild step by step.

(Cover image is a screenshot.)

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