Huge Airlift to Rescue 22 Moon Bears Lastly Accomplished

SPRINGFIELD, Colo., Might 10, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — 22 Moon Bears had been flown from Seoul, South Korea to Los Angeles Worldwide Airport the place they had been cleared by U.S. wildlife officers after which transported by particular service to The Wild Animal Refuge in Springfield, Colorado.

Upon their arrival on the 10,000-acre Baca County facility, the 22 Moon Bears – that are extra formally referred to as Asiatic Black Bears – had been unloaded into momentary holding services the place every bear may chill out and be evaluated by the Sanctuary’s full-time Veterinary workers.

The large rescue effort dubbed “Mission Free: The Bear” is a collaboration between the Korean Animal Welfare Affiliation (KAWA), an NGO primarily based in Seoul, South Korea, and The Wild Animal Sanctuary (TWAS), which is registered U.S. non-profit group primarily based in Colorado.


TWAS is the biggest carnivore sanctuary on the planet and operates a number of services in Colorado and Texas, with the Wild Animal Refuge (TWAR) being the biggest facility with pure forested habitat for Bears.

The 22 bears originated at a breeding farm in South Korea that beforehand used the bears in gallbladder and bile extraction processes.  Though the business harvesting of Bear gallbladders and extracting Bear bile was as soon as a typical follow all through Asian nations, the method has come beneath assault lately.

By a cooperative settlement between Bear farmers and the Korean authorities, all captive Moon Bears dwelling inside South Korea had been sterilized in 2017 in an effort to cease all breeding.  Though the copy of Bears ceased at the moment, farmers had been nonetheless allowed to kill and harvest gallbladders from Bears 10 years of age or older.  This course of will proceed with the 300-plus Moon Bears which are nonetheless held in small metal cages throughout the nation. 


In 2020, KAWA officers contacted TWAS’s Government Director, Pat Craig, to request help with saving the Bears.  Craig agreed to dedicate greater than a thousand acres of prime Refuge habitat to the Moon Bear rescue effort, and subsequently started arranging for the primary 22 Bears to be flown midway all over the world.

Nonetheless, with the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, all viable transportation choices had been shut down for practically two years.  Lastly, in early 2022, sufficient air cargo flights turned accessible to fly the Bears out of South Korea.  Upon arriving in Los Angeles, the Bears had been promptly transported by a specialised rescue staff to The Wild Animal Refuge.


As every Bear’s paws had been capable of contact earth for the primary time of their life, each the American and Korean Veterinarians in attendance on the unloading remarked how superb it was to see the Bears react.  Having spent their total lives laying, sitting and strolling on metal bars, the Bears rapidly needed to learn to stability and stroll on the extremely completely different substrate.

Basic In-Bum Chun, a adorned South Korean veteran, was onsite with different KAWA officers throughout this long-awaited second: “People have gained the respect of the world and Koreans not due to huge ships or weapons, however due to the humanity of its individuals which was demonstrated time and again by the Wild Animal Sanctuary in Denver, Colorado“.


Additional efforts to rescue the remaining Moon Bears is ongoing and extra data is out there through the Sanctuary’s web site listed under.

About The Wild Animal Sanctuary and KAWA
The Wild Animal Sanctuary is the biggest nonprofit carnivore sanctuary on the planet, with over 700 rescued animals together with Lions, Tigers, Bears, Wolves, Leopards and different giant carnivores dwelling in giant pure habitats. Established in 1980, the Sanctuary operates three areas inside Colorado and Texas with greater than 10,000 acres accessible for abused, deserted and confiscated carnivores. The Sanctuary focuses on rehabilitating captive wildlife to allow them to be launched into pure habitats the place they will roam freely and reside with others of their very own sort.  Extra data is out there at

The Korean Animal Welfare Affiliation is the biggest nonprofit group for animals in Korea. In line with our slogan ‘All creatures in ache and struggling have the rights to aid and to be free from it.’ We work to cut back the usage of animals and to limit the sorts of animals utilized by human beings. We advocate the renovation of animal safety legal guidelines, encourage the rescue and adoption of abused animals, and conduct analysis and investigation of animal welfare. 

SOURCE The Wild Animal Sanctuary

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