Lifestyle & Human Interest

Deputies Rescue Tiny Bear Cubs Trapped Inside Flooded Den and Wailing for Help


As winter gives way to spring, heavy snowfall begins to quickly melt, causing flooding in places that may be dangerous for young wildlife, like a bear’s den.

Two young bear cubs living near the Bad River Indian Reservation in northern Wisconsin found themselves trapped in their own den as fast-melting snow turned to ice-cold water.

Deputies with the Ashland County Sheriff’s Office, Zach Pierce and Dylan Wegner, heard the terrified screams of the cubs and went to investigate.

The deputies rescued the shivering, soaked bear cubs and placed them inside the squad car while waiting for wildlife officials to arrive, WKOW-TV reported.

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The cubs are now recovering at Wild Instincts, a wildlife hospital in Rhinelander, Wisconsin. The male cub was in “pretty good shape,” Wild Instincts wrote, while his sister was “fair, borderline critical.”

The cubs will not be reunited with their mother, the hospital said, offering an explanation as to why mother bears sometimes have to abandon their cubs in times of flooding:

“Bears abandon dens for many, many reasons. Some involve human activities, some do not,” the organization wrote.

“Flooding is a common reason that we were expecting this year because of the huge snowfall and potential for fast melt,” the organization continued.

A young mother bear will leave her young in order to preserve her own life for the sake of future reproduction. If the mother feels it is necessary to abandon her young in order to save herself, she will.

“Many first-time moms of many species will leave their babies to save themselves. That is Nature. No judgments,” the organization explained.

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The animal hospital reminded viewers that they are a working hospital and not a zoo, requesting that interested persons do not try and visit the bears.

Wild Instincts reported that the cubs are safe, and and the female is doing well after medical intervention.

The organization plans to raise the cubs only briefly before releasing them back into the wild, likely this fall, and are experienced with the process.

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A graduate of Grand Canyon University, Kim Davis has been writing for The Western Journal since 2015, focusing on lifestyle stories.
Kim Davis began writing for The Western Journal in 2015. Her primary topics cover family, faith, and women. She has experience as a copy editor for the online publication Thoughtful Women. Kim worked as an arts administrator for The Phoenix Symphony, writing music education curriculum and leading community engagement programs throughout the region. She holds a degree in music education from Grand Canyon University with a minor in eating tacos.
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