Binder Park Zoo adopts 3 orphaned black bears

2 boy cubs, 1 girl cub rescued from Alaska find new home in Battle Creek

Published On: Jul 26 2012 09:08:40 AM EDT
BATTLE CREEK, Mich. -

Three orphaned Alaskan black bear cubs recently rescued from the wild have found a new home at a West Michigan zoo. And on Facebook.

Binder Park Zoo Interim CEO Diane Thompson says the Battle Creek facility jumped at the idea to provide a welcoming home for the rambunctious and playful cubs that otherwise faced "certain death" if left un-rescued.

“We received a call from Alaskan wildlife officials. They said a mother black bear had disappeared, leaving behind three baby bears. If Binder Park Zoo could take the cubs, they would try to capture them; if not they would be left alone, which would mean certain death,” Thompson said. “Of course we immediately agreed to assist in rescuing these orphans by providing a home where they would not only be well cared for, but well received by our supportive community.”

The cubs arrived last week and will be on exhibit this weekend. 

The two males and one female are about 6 months old and weigh 30 pounds.  Zoo officials will seek the public's help for names.

Cubs in the wild completely depend on their mother for the first year of life and generally stay with her for 1 1/2 years learning necessary survival skills.

North American black bears have been targeted by poachers.