Bearizona, a wildlife park in Williams, has taken in two bear cubs orphaned when their mother was euthanized by state game employees in Pinetop-Lakeside.
According to information from Bearizona, the mother had been relocated once but returned to the neighborhood, where a resident was feeding her daily.
The two, 4-month-old cubs were discovered a day later at the top of a pine tree. They were brought down in the backpack of a professional tree climber – each weighed just 15 pounds.
Bearizona says it will quarantine the cubs, with care provided by veterinarians and animal staff. After 30 days they will be released into their own exhibit in the walk-through section of the park, Fort Bearizona. The public will be able to see the cubs in their new home beginning Friday, June 29.
" They were on solids already, so we don't have to feed them formula of any kind," said Bearizona Animal Staff Director Dave O'Connell. "At this age, they are still learning how to climb and dig and stuff, so we want to keep them on their own until they are about a year old. Then we'll teach them how to socialize by introducing them to other young bears in our 'Bear Kindergarten.'"
Bearizona is a drive- and walk-through wildlife park whose mission is to rescue wild animals in need of new homes and promote conservation by inviting visitors to view wildlife in spacious, natural environments. For more information, visit www.bearizona.com