Sometimes it’s best just to make a little time to get out and see the bears. It puts everything into perspective.
Malaysia’s renowned singer songwriter Rafique Rashid remakes Disney’s Bare Necessities into the Bear Necessities. This performance was for the kick off event at Central Market Kuala Lumpur in support of the Sun Bear Rock! Festival from 21-27 April 2012 to raise awareness about the BSBCC.
This is Susie. I don’t know how old she is about 6 now. She’s a little more heavily built than the other sows she goes out with, weighing-in a around 6 stone (38kg) and is in very good health. To give an idea of scale, she’s about 2′ (60cm) to her shoulders.
I quite like this picture I got of her this afternoon;for me it’s rather hard photographing sun bears as my pictures usually seem to come out as blurred images of the bears’ bums. Though she is quite dominant within her group, one must be very quiet and patient photographing bears such as her, as the slightest noise can cause her to run off in the opposite direction. I’m most thankful to Susie for her participation in today’s photo shoot.
“Dear BBC, I live with more than 20 sun bears and would like to plant something that they would enjoy. What do you suggest?” Paul – Sandakan
Dear Paul, have you considered ginger? Sun bears love ginger; it’s a juicy and delicious treat that they are sure to enjoy.
Ginger grows in abundance at the edge of the forest here in Sepilok.
The ginger that we generally consume, Zingiber officinale, is only the rhizome -underground stem- of the plant. When gathering ginger for the bears, only a few of the above-ground stems of each plant are removed.
However, do the bears enjoy the ginger for its taste, its water content or something else altogether? This is something I intend to answer in my next post.
In addition to Environmental Education and language training, I am also helping out with improving numeracy at the BSBCC, particularly with the bears. Om is always rather intimidated by a classroom environment and so I have been getting him to play hide-and-seek with me in the forest enclosure (see above). At first he could barely manage “one-two-three” before running after me, but hopefully by the end of this week I’ll have him counting to twenty.