A young bear cub in Tumkur district of Karnataka fortunately managed to survive a trap, thanks to an intervention by the state forest department and the NGO, Wildlife SOS. The male bear cub, estimated to be about 10 months old, had its left forelimb trapped in a poacher's trap near Vittalapura village in the district. While trying to free itself from the trap, it became further entangled in a barb wire fence outside a coconut plantation.
Forest officials and NGO representatives had to sedate the young animal before cutting it free from the trap and the fence. The bear was found to have injuries on its forelimb - and was also bleeding from the mouth after attempting to bite through the barbed wire. Dr Arun A Sha, Director Veterinary Operations, Wildlife SOS said, "Apart from external injuries, the left forelimb was swollen and there was visible bleeding in the mouth as the cub had tried to gnaw his way out of the wire fence. We administered topical treatment for the wounds along with anti-inflammatory injectables."
Just three days earlier, another bear cub had been rescued from another trap - a clear indication that this illegal setting of traps is a terrible threat to wildlife. The forest department is trying to educate villagers against this practice. Laxminarayanappa, Range Forest Officer (Chikkanayakahalli) said, "Measures have been taken to create awareness amongst the local community about learning to co-exist with the wildlife that resides in the neighbouring forest areas and the illegality of committing crimes against wildlife."
Kartick Satyanarayan, Co-founder of Wildlife SOS said "Farmers often set up barbed wires around their fields and plantations to prevent wild animals such as sloth bears, nilgais or wild boars from raiding their crops. Consequently, poachers often use this as a means to get easy access to wild animals by strategically placing snares and traps around these areas."
Wildlife SOS runs a bear rescue centre at Bannerghatta on the outskirts of Bengaluru that houses and rehabilitates dancing bears that have been rescued.