Orphaned, starving, and alone, a polar bear cub was rescued by a group of gold miners in the Arctic, from the remote Russian island of Bolshevik.
After its mother died, the hungry cub was attracted to cooking smells from the gold mine, and begged to be fed. Over the next several months, the wild animal became tame as the miners cared for her and saved her life. The bear happily played with the miners and followed them around the base, according to the Siberian Times.
Strict rules forbid the feeding of endangered polar bears, as it encourages the animals to lose the ability to hunt in the wild properly. However, the miners weren’t going to let the orphaned bear starve, and they say that the bear behaves “like a dog.”
Video footage of the bear shows her climbing a ladder at the mining facility, before jumping up to give an actual bear-hug one of the miners.
The miners were aware of the potential danger, knowing that soon the cub would grow into a two-hundred-pound predator, so they set their sights on making sure the bear was properly rescued when they returned to mainland Russia, as they had no communication on the remote island.
As soon as they returned home, they contacted experts at the Royev Ruchei Zoo in Krasnoyarslk, where the cub now resides.
“All we knew was that the cub’s mother died, and that it was months ago when it discovered the base attracted by the smell of food. Shift workers saved its life, the cub had no chance to survive. For right or wrong, but they fed the endangered animal and through that tamed it.”Andrey Gorban, Director of Royev Ruchei Zoo
Finally, a happy polar bear story shared on Earth Day!