Familiarity with humans didn’t help a young orphaned bear rehabilitate in the wild which chose instead to return to its carers at the wildlife refuge Arktouros in Florina, in northwestern Macedonia, after spending a month in the forest.
Patrick, as the cub was named, was rescued in the region’s mountains in March 2015 when he was just a few weeks old and was cared by Arktouros for a year. He lived under the close supervision of his carers who provided food and shelter but also training on how to survive in nature.
Patrick was eventually released in April, but after roaming free for a month, he was sighted at a section of the refuge not open to visitors. When he was identified by his electronic tag, Arktouros’ emergency team recaptured the bear to avoid contact with humans and led him back into the centre.
“Scientists believe that despite every effort to give Patrick a second chance in the wild as a free bear, the fact that he was captured just a few weeks old … resulted in him becoming very accustomed to human presence and cannot survive by himself,” Akrtouros spokesman Panos Stefanou told ANA-MPA.
Source: ANA MPA