Feb 7, 2011
Some exciting news from Pakistan! Our colleagues at WSPA member society the Bioresource Research Centre (BRC) have rescued three more bears from the Layyah district, Punjab in Pakistan.
For most of their lives, these three female bears: Bhoori (10 years old), Leela (8 years old) and Kaali (5 years old) have been used in bear baiting events, but now they can look forward to peaceful times in Balkasar Sanctuary.
Bhoori is 10 years old and her name means brown. You can see why in the photo.
Like Leela and Kaali, several of Bhoori’s teeth were pulled out when she was a young bear. The claws on her hind legs have also been damaged during her captivity.
For the last few years, as often as possible, she was used as ‘entertainment’ in bear baiting events.
8 year old Leela’s name means play, but for this 8 year old brown bear life has been anything but playful.
As a young bear her front teeth were removed and the claws of her hind limbs cut, in preparation for the ‘sport’ she would be forced to take part in.
At first, Leela appeared to be strong and active, but it quickly became clear that she is blind or severely vision-impaired. Baiting would have been a terrifying experience for this beautiful bear.
5 year old Kaali’s name means black, fitting for an Asiatic black bear. For almost half her life she’s been used in bear baiting events.
Smaller than her two companions she is very active.
All of Kaali’s canine teeth have been removed – a procedure that was most likely performed without anaesthetic, causing her immense pain.
All three bears owners have accepted alternative livelihood packages, meaning they have each been supplied with a general store to run. It is this assistance that gives people and their families the power to live cruelty-free lives, and ensures that no new bears will be poached from the wild - an important part in putting an end to the tradition of bear baiting once and for all.
Thanks to the generosity of WSPA and Bricks for Bears supporters, Bhoori, Leela and Kaali now have a safe place to go, Balkasar Sanctuary. Their wounds will be treated and they will get the opportunity to live the lives they deserve. We’ll keep you updated on the progress of our new friends.
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