|The bear received a medical examination by Four Paws Việt staff. — Photo courtesy of ENV |Viet Nam News
THÁI NGUYÊN — An Asiatic black bear owned by Trần Văn Trách in Thái Nguyên City, Thái Nguyên Province was safely transferred to the Ninh Bình Bear Sanctuary yesterday.
Trần Văn Trách is the first bear owner in Thái Nguyên Province to voluntarily hand over his bear, marking a milestone in the journey towards ending bear farming in the locality.
Last May, Trách joined a tour of the sanctuary to see what an appropriate home to bears should look like. This was part of a joint effort by Four Paws Việt, an animal welfare organisation, Education for Nature Việt Nam (ENV) and Thái Nguyên Province Department of Forest Rangers to convince bear owners to give up their animals.
According to the latest data released by Việt Nam Forest Protection Department, as of July, 2018, Việt Nam has only 780 bears in captivity outside rescue centres.
According to ENV, Việt Nam has 22 bear farm-free provinces. The number of bears in captivity significantly decreased between 2005 and 2017 from 4,300 to some 900.
Bears were kept to extract their bile until the 1990s. Bear bile farming was outlawed in 1992 but owners were not forced to give up the bears they held, prolonging the harmful practice. — VNS