Watch CBS News

Underweight, Motherless Bear Cub Rescued After Climbing Backstop On California Reservation

HOOPA (CBS SF) - Two formerly lonesome bear cubs are starting 2015 together in the care of Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care after showing signs of distress and being rescued by humans near Northern California's Trinity River over the holidays.

The most recent rescue was carried out by California Fish and Wildlife officials after a cub was spotted repeatedly near a school on the Hoopa Reservation. On New Year 's Eve, the animal climbed the backstop of the local baseball diamond and appeared to be stuck. Rescuers moved in and pulled her down.

"She was underweight, we estimate about 20-25 pounds," said Cheryl Millham of Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care Inc., who said that likely made the bear easier to capture.

Hoopa bear
This bear cub was rescued after climbing the backstop of a ball-field on the Hoopa Reservation. (Photo credit: Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care Inc.)

LTWC officials said in an email that they hope the animal can be released in spring.

"California Fish and Wildlife decided it would be best for this cub to come here so we can put some weight on," read the release.

A week earlier, just to the south west of the reservation, an elderly woman told her neighbor that a lone bear cub had approached her home in Salyer CA, apparently looking for food. A neighbor was able to trap that bear.

"He called us at first and said he had a bear in the back of his truck," said Millham. "We told him 'you need to call Fish and Wildlife.'"

That animal too was found to be drastically underweight.

Both animals are about the same age, just under a year. Typically bears don't split from their mothers until close to a year and a half of age. It's not clear what caused the separation for these cubs.

Millham said the a full medical examination is pending, but the animals are now residing in the same enclosure.

You can watch them get to know each other on LTWC live streaming cameras.


View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.