Rehabilitating Asian bears

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 2003:

CHENGDU, AGRA–The Giant Panda Breeding
and Research Center and the China Bear Rescue
Center stand just miles apart, on opposite sides
of Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan state in
southwestern China.
The Wildlife SOS Agra Bear Rescue Centre
is 1,500 miles away, on the far side of the
Himalayas, 10 miles from the Taj Mahal, within
the Sur Sarovar Sanctuary, near Agra, India.
The giant pandas, red pandas, and
Asiatic black bears of two subspecies whom the
three sanctuaries host were all caught in the
crossfire of late 20th century Marxist class
struggle, but that was just the latest of their
species’ misfortunes.
Each are descended from some of the first
bears to lose habitat to humans.
Products of parallel evolution, bears
and large primates, including humans, developed
to fill approximately the same ecological niches.
Bears came from the carnivore family,
emerging in the northern hemisphere only slightly
earlier than the first raccoon-sized advanced
primates emerged in northeastern Africa.
Most bears and the most widely
distributed large primates developed omnivorous
diets. The biggest bears evolved limited
bipedalism and relatively small, little used
tails; some of the largest primates became fully
bipedal and shed their tails. Primates developed
opposable thumbs. So did the raccoon branch of
the bear/raccoon line.

All of the bears and raccoons and all of
the large primates appear to have become perhaps
the most intelligent and adaptable mammals within
their range. Most of the bear/raccoon continuum,
along with humans, chimpanzees, and baboons,
are able to forage for edible vegetation, hunt,
scavenge, or even fish for food as necessary.
While the bear/raccoon continuum split
into regionally specialized species ranging from
the lemur-like ringtails of South America to the
giant polar bears of the Arctic, large primates
divided into species as different as the
tree-dwelling vervets and the mostly
ground-dwelling mountain gorillas.
From the bear/raccoon continuum came the
versatile, highly social red pandas, raccoons,
ringtails, and coatis. From the primate line
came the baboons, of similar size, social
habits, and diet.
From the bear line came the large brown
bears, the smaller black bears, and the sun
bears, smallest of all the non-raccoon bears,
as the line pushed south, into habitat where
retaining body heat became far less important
than minimizing skin surface to avoid dehydrating.
From the primate line came gibbons and
orangutans, who invaded Asia, and chimpanzees
and protohumans, who pushed north.
For a time the bears had the advantage
over primates in the northern hemisphere.
Glaciers enabled bears to colonize as far south
as the Atlas Mountains of north Africa. Primates
were unable to extend their range into Europe
north of Spain and beyond the Himalayas. Even if
they could get past the mountains and the cold,
they could not survive among bears, who
monopolized the food sources and ate the primates
too.
Climate change and the human development of weapons tipped the balance.
For more than two million years now bears
have been in steady retreat. Only in the late
20th century did the backyard raccoons of North
America become the first members of the
bear/raccoon continuum to proliferate within
human-dominated habitat–and then only because
humans mostly quit trapping and shooting them,
left food sources accessible, removed
free-roaming dogs from suburban neighborhoods,
and began vaccinating raccoons against rabies.
The likeness of bears to humans was
easily recognized by the Asiatic people who
fought them through the mountains of China and
Siberia, through coastal Alaska, and into North
America. Joaquin Miller recalled in True Bear
Stories (1900) that the Native Americans he grew
up among in Oregon and northern California
believed themselves to be descended from the
union of a red-haired woman and a bear.
Their kin still in China called bears “the people of the mountains.”
In Siberia, northern Russia, and as far
into Europe as Romania and Poland “the people of
the mountains” were indirect beneficiaries of
Communism, because Communist dictators reserved
bear hunting to themselves and their minions.
Some, like Nicolai Ceaucescu of Romania, killed
prodigious numbers of bears, but most shot a
bear only occasionally with important guests.
Left mostly alone in regions unsuited to
agriculture and relatively inaccessible, bears
thrived until the fall of Communism in 1990-1991
brought western logging technology, trophy
hunters, and openings for poachers to use
military equipment stolen or bought on the black
market to exploit the international market for
bears’ body parts and byproducts.
In India and China, by contrast, bears
were further victimized by Marxist ideology.

Dancing bears

The victimization in India was actually
nothing new. It just took a new twist.
For centuries–perhaps two or three
thousand years–the Kalendar gypsies of India and
Pakistan have captured and cruelly trained bear
cubs. Fitted with nose rings similar to those
worn by Kalendar women, who are also known for
dancing acts, the cubs learn to “dance” from the
use of hot coals as their first “stage” while the
ring is jerked by a chain.
Mostly Islamic from the earliest written
record of their existence, the Kalendars and
their dancing bears spread throughout Europe
during the Middle Ages, and were among the
earliest regular conduits of learning between
East and West. They introduced the Asian style
of chronology to Europe: hence the word
“calendar.” They may have brought chess to
Europe.
Persecuted from the Inquisition to the
Nazi Holocaust and ghettoized even today in much
of Europe, the Kalendars and their descendants
and relatives mostly retreated into the portions
of Europe which still have large Islamic
populations–especially within the former Ottoman
empire.
There, in Greece, Turkey, and the many
former Ottoman states that were swallowed or
dominated for most of the 20th century by the
Soviet Union, the Kalendars and their dancing
bears persisted, often as part of
government-sponsored circuses, until the
Communist governments themselves fell apart in
1990-1991 and threw the bear-trainers back on the
streets.
The World Society for the Protection of
Animals in 1993 began a campaign to retire
dancing bears to sanctuaries that WSPA promised
to build in Greece, Hungary, India, Pakistan,
Turkey, and Thailand.
The first WSPA-built bear sanctuary
opened in Turkey in 1995, and was handed over to
the Turkish government in 2001. Others were
completed and opened, but the process of
building the sanctuaries and turning them over to
local management typically turned out to take
much longer than was initially anticipated, as
construction costs often soared beyond estimates
and substantial friction developed between WSPA
and some of the local partners.
As the need for dancing bear sanctuaries
expanded beyond the capacity planned by WSPA,
other organizations became involved in building
them, notably Vier Pfoten of Austria, which in
partnership with the Brigitte Bardot Foundation
and the Bulgarian government opened the Belitsa
Dancing Bear Park at Rila, Bulgaria in November
2000.

Wildlife SOS

The Wildlife SOS Agra Bear Rescue Centre,
the last sanctuary built under the WSPA
“Libearty” program, opened in December 2002
after more than five years of development.
Completing the Agra facility and beginning to
look after more than 50 bears who flooded in
during the first six months of operation
eventually required financial help from Care For
The Wild, of Britain; Free The Bears, of
Australia; One Voice, of France; and
International Animal Rescue, based in Britain
but also raising funds in the U.S.
Free The Bears, One Voice,
Inter-national Animal Rescue, and WSPA have also
made commitments toward the ongoing support of
the Agra Bear Rescue Centre.
Wildlife SOS, managing the Agra
facility, is a rescue and rehabilitation society
formed in Delhi by Kartick Satyanarayan, now the
fulltime sanctuary director, and Geeta
Seshamani, director of the Friendicoes animal
hospital and sanctuary in Delhi.
If the Indian Wildlife Act of 1973 had
been strictly enforced 30 years ago, the last
dancing bears in India should have been
confiscated then, and should have died of old
age by now. Sanctuary space built for them
should have been available to other animals.
Unfortunately, the Wildlife Act was not
enforced to confiscate dancing bears and other
species illegally used in traveling performances
until Maneka Gandhi, the Indian minister of
state for animal welfare from 1998 until
mid-2002, moved to enforce it by fighting and
winning a series of court battles culminating in
a favorable verdict from the Supreme Court of
India on May Day, 2001.
May Day, coinciding with the interna
tional celebration of Communism, was an
appropriate date because even though India has
never been a Communist nation, Marxist politics
had much to do with protecting the Kalendars–and
other “scheduled caste” users of wild
animals–from prompt enforcement of the Wildlife
Act.
Every Indian government since
independence from Britain was achieved in 1948
has struggled to contain the Marxist rebel
faction known as the Naxalites. Armed and heavily
influenced by Chinese Communist leader Mao
Zedong, the Naxalites were in the 1970s and
1980s near the height of their strength,
recruiting guerilla fighters among the rural
“scheduled castes” by exploiting almost any kind
of grievance.
Confiscating wildlife from traveling
performers with widespread contacts and the
ability to quickly muster an audience might have
turned thousands of essentially apolitical poor
people into dangerous foes, including the
Kalendars, who as Muslims were already somewhat
suspect to many Hindus. A succession of
governments therefore disregarded the
anti-captivity portions of the Wildlife Act.
Mrs. Gandhi won in court, but at cost of
being reputedly now a Naxalite assassination
target.
Wildlife SOS Agra Bear Rescue Centre
cofounders Kartick Satyanarayan and Geeta
Seshamani in late August met ANIMAL PEOPLE at the
Chengdu airport, visiting the Chengdu
sanctuaries en route to the Asia for Animals
conference in Hong Kong.

Panda profits

Panda bears and Asiatic black bears–like
other “peoples” caught up in the forced
transformation of the People’s Republic–were
among the more direct victims and casualties of
Communism.
“In 1958 Mao Zedong initiated the ‘Great
Leap Forward’ with a plan to double steel
production in only one year,” explained
political scientist Peter Li in a September 2003
keynote address to the Asia for Animals
conference. “Huge swaths of forest were cut to
feed millions of backyard smelters. Among the
enduring effects was the fragmentation of panda
bear habitat into widely separated tracts within
which the remaining bear populations may lack the
genetic diversity to survive.”
The People’s Daily reported in 2001 that
“China established its first giant panda
protection zone in the 1950s and banned poaching
of the creatures in 1957. China put the rare
animals under first-class state protection in
1962.” The best-known panda reserve, at Wolong,
was designated in 1963, the same year that the
Beijing Zoo achieved the first birth of a giant
panda in captivity.
Panda conservation was stimulated by the
1961 formation of the World Wildlife Fund,
albeit perhaps mainly because everyone involved
recognized a financial opportunity.
The WWF founders, trophy hunters all,
had as their top priority preventing the closure
of former British colonies to trophy hunting, as
eventually occurred after India and Kenya won
independence. The WWF central theme, then as
now, was promoting the doctrine of “sustainable
use,” meaning that hunting license fees should
finance conservation. The strategy was copied
from that of the U.S.-based National Wildlife
Federation, formed in 1936, with the additional
twist that WWF envisioned funding itself with
public contributions from animal lovers of
ordinary means.
Since animal lovers would be unlikely to
donate to further the blood sports pursuits of
the likes of WWF founding directors Prince Philip
of England, Prince Bernhardt of the Netherlands,
and the whaler Aristotle Onassis, founding
president Peter Scott chose the giant panda as
the WWF emblem. The giant panda looked cute and
cuddly, was easily depicted in black-and-white,
could not be hunted because China was then closed
to west erners, and WWF did not actually have to
do much to save giant pandas from extinction
because panda bear habitat was inaccessible.
Almost immediately, however, the
People’s Republic positioned itself to seek panda
conservation funding from the WWF as soon as
politics permitted.
The effort began in earnest with the 1972
People’s Republic donation of two panda bears to
the National Zoo in Washington D.C.–the first
major transaction of any kind between the U.S.
and the then-25-year-old Communist government.
Giant pandas and ping-pong players
emerged as China’s most successful international
ambassadors.
Within 20 years more than 100 giant
pandas were sent to zoos around the world.
Between the popularity of giant pandas with
zoo-goers and the difficulty of inducing the
bears to breed in captivity, the People’s
Republic gradually discovered that it had the
most lucrative monopoly in the history of animal
exhibition, and moved to exploit it.
To ensure preservation of the giant panda
supply, the last 14 fragments of giant panda
habitat were declared protected reserves, later
split into 27 “protection zones.”
To keep the price of pandas up, outright
sales of pandas were halted in favor of “breeding
loans,” which actually resulted in births only
in Mexico City.
The World Wildlife Fund, by 1981 the
richest animal charity in the world, was tapped
for $1 million to build a state-of-the-art panda
breeding center at the Wolong Reserve, 90 miles
northwest of Chengdu. By 1991 WWF had been
persuaded to invest $1.5 million more in building
new homes for 5,200 farmers who were relocated
out of the protected habitat, and in building a
hydroelectric power station to keep the farmers
from burning bamboo as fuel.
Despite the investment, the estimated
panda population plummeted from about 2,000 circa
1980 to barely 1,000 a decade later, and has
stayed in that vicinity. The cost of obtaining
pandas for exhibition, even temporarily, soared
from circa $500,000 to more than $3 million.
Even at that price, the population of pandas in
zoos is now 140.
The People’s Republic also hit upon a new
moneymaker: instead of exporting giant pandas to
the world, it could bring the world to the giant
pandas. Wolong was too remote to become a major
tourist destination. Therefore the Giant Panda
Breeding and Research Center was built on the
outskirts of Chengdu, within an easy bus ride of
the airport, and has been growing ever since.
Called “the Chengdu Zoo” by early western
visitors, the Giant Panda Breeding and Research
Center won credibility by achieving the first
successful artificial insemination of a giant
panda in 1980, and the first successful giant
panda embryo transplant several years later. The
center was instrumental in achieving a record 19
captive births worldwide in 2003, of whom 16
survived infancy.
Visitor accounts and photographs from the
1980s suggest the Chengdu facility was initially
a complex of traditional cement bear pits and the
boxy, determinedly ugly office buildings typical
of Mao-era Chinese construction. By the 1990s it
was described as one of the better Chinese zoos,
amid a boom of zoo-building, but some giant
pandas and red pandas were purportedly held for
photo opportunities in barren cages near the main
entrance concession stands.
Now housing 38 giant pandas, the Giant
Panda Breeding and Research Center today offers
animal habitats that match the best western
standards. Barren cages and cement pits are no
longer evident, though the chance to cuddle a
baby panda is offered for a steep price, as is
fishing at a zoo pond. Similar concessions were
once common at U.S. zoos, but largely
disappeared more than 20 years ago.
Safety precautions are behind U.S. norms.
At least one teenaged male visitor and one female
staff member have been hurt by giant pandas in
recent years after stumbling into their habitats
–but the pandas do not seem to have treated the
intruders more roughly than they treat each other
in brief territorial squabbles. Humans are just
more fragile.
The most dated aspect of the Giant Panda
Breeding and Research Center is a museum of badly
preserved mounted specimens of Chinese wildlife.
Though the resident giant pandas are
charismatic and quite at ease with visitors, the
red pandas make an energetic effort to steal the
show. Usually exhibited alone or in pairs in the
U.S., and usually asleep during daylight hours,
in Chengdu as many as 30 share one large habitat,
within which they are as interactive as a room
full of kittens.
In May 2003 the city of Chengdu announced
plans to expand the Giant Panda Breeding and
Research Center into a 550-acre theme park. A
model of the proposed development indicates that
the animal population is expected to stay the
same, but the giant pandas will gain enough
habitat to live more as they would in the wild,
and visitor facilities are to be improved, to
attract more traffic and encourage longer stays.

Bile farm bears

Asiatic black bears, or moon bears,
also felt the habitat crunch as result of the
Great Leap Forward, and had already been heavily
hunted for their gall bladders and other parts
used in traditional Chinese medicine, but the
worst was still ahead for them.
While pandas became the most popular
icons of modern China, North Korea in the early
1980s developed the technique of factory-farming
Asiatic black bears for bile, the substance
produced by their gall bladders, which has
medicinal qualities comparable to synthetic
steroids and other anti-inflamatory drugs
including aspirin.
Imprisoned within cages that hold them
virtually immobile, with metal shunts
permanently inserted into their abdomens, bile
farm bears endure a torment resembling the worst
aspects of the treatment of veal calves, sows in
gestation crates, battery-caged laying hens,
and the mares whose urine is collected to make
Premarin.
Beyond that, the shunt insertion points
typically become painfully infected.
Although the compounds that do the same
things as bear bile are easily synthesized, and
are much less expensive to produce, officials
who erroneously anticipated a growing demand for
bear bile began building production capacity as
fast as they could. Bile farming was described
as a means of protecting bears in the wild by
undercutting the market for poached bear
products–which did not happen, as bear poaching
increased around the world, even as the number
of bears on bile farms soared over 10,000, with
plans announced to tap at least 39,000 bears.
That would have put nearly twice as many
Asiatic black bears into bile extraction cages as
remain in the wild.

China Bear Rescue

Protest against bile farming began in the
early 1990s, amplified first by the
International Fund for Animal Welfare.
Recalled Paul J. Seigel, then IFAW
director of animal welfare, now representing
Direct Mail Systems Inc., “In 1986 we opened our
Far East office in Hong Kong and our
representative began going into China. We
realized then that the bear was highly prized for
culinary and medicinal value, but we did not
discover that the animals were being farmed for
their bile until 1990. We first learned this in
South Korea, and through the Korea Animal
Protection Society were able expose the practice
and have it banned.”
The IFAW campaign against bile farming
debuted in Britain in June 1993, followed by
similar efforts from the World Society for the
Protection of Animals.
Directing the IFAW campaign was Jill
Robinson, an immigrant to Hong Kong from
Nottingham, England.
Although tapping the bears for bile
ended, more than 1,300 bears remain caged at
former South Korean bile farms.
“They have apparently had catheters
removed, but a ridiculous regulation implemented
around two years ago allows farmers to kill bears
over 22 years old and sell their gall bladders.
With breeding still allowed on the farms, this
exposes a huge loophole,” Robinson told ANIMAL
PEOPLE.
In December 1994, IFAW, the Hong Kong
group EarthCare, and the Chinese Wildlife
Conservation Association announced a protocol “To
reduce the production of bear farms by one third,
close down the worst bear farms as soon as
possible,” prevent caging additional bear cubs,
“eliminate bear farming completely in the
future,” and “conserve all bear species in China
in their natural habitat.”
But the Chinese Wildlife Conservation
Association, though a branch of the federal
ministry of forestry, did not have the clout to
stop bile farming outright, or even to slow the
growth of it. Bile farming expanded during the
mid-1990s and crossed into Vietnam.
Unknown to IFAW and other outside
activist groups at the time, and therefore not
inquired about in surveys of Chinese views of
animal issues funded in 1998-1999 by IFAW and the
Animals Asia Foundation, there was cautiously
expressed but growing opposition to bile farming
within China, too. Some of it may have evolved
out of the positive image of bears created by the
effort to conserve pandas.
The Chinese opposition emerged in an April 1998
China Daily essay entitled “Extracting gall from
live bears is appallingly inhumane,” by recent
bile farm visitor Yu Yunyao.” Peter Li, who
came to the U.S. from China in 1993 to study and
teach, translated the Yu Yunyao essay and sent it
to animal people.
“Since this industry is widely seen as
part of the Chinese economic miracle,” says Li,
“contributing to the glorification of Chinese
culture, combatting it presents a comprehensive
challenge.”
As with raising dogs for meat, both the
consumption and the opposition occur mainly in
affluent urban areas. The economic benefits are
felt chiefly in remote rural areas, where dog
meat and bear bile production are often still
perceived at the village level as being .among
the more profitable branches of animal husbandry.
Reality is that both bile farming and
raising dogs for meat appear to be glutted niche
markets, neither growing nor attracting new
investment, but their profitability may be
declining less rapidly than that of older pig and
poultry farms which cannot compete against the
introduction of U.S.-style factory methods in
more accessible places.
Leaving IFAW, Jill Robinson formed the
Animals Asia Foundation in 1998 to carry on a
variety of projects through Southeast Asia that
she had begun with IFAW support. The most
ambitious was starting the first sanctuary for
ex-bile farm bears at an IFAW-built facility in
Panyu, China, several hours up the Pearl River
from Hong Kong.
Opened in 1995, on two acres leased from
Hong Kong legislator David Chu Yu Lin, the Panyu
sanctuary housed nine bears Robinson obtained
from the defunct Hui Zhou hospital bile farm–the
first she had ever seen.
Scots-born veterinarian Gail Cochrane,
then working for IFAW, removed the bears’ shunts
and invented methods of strengthening their
atrophied arms and legs.
Profiled by ANIMAL PEOPLE in
January/February 2001, the Panyu sanctuary became
the prototype for the far more ambitious Chengu
project.
Already, under contract with the China
Wildlife Conservation Association, Robinson had
agreed to take into sanctuary care as many as 500
bears from 200 small bile farms scheduled for
closure by the Sichuan provincial government
before 2005.
Leasing a former forestry department
complex near Chengdu, Robinson hired fluently
multi-lingual ex-California motorcycle salesman
Boris Chiao to turn it into the biggest bear
sanctuary ever built. Chiao had little
background in animal work, but brought to the
job the right combination of persuasive skills,
technical know-how, and personal drive to get
the site ready on short notice to receive the
bears, who began coming in October 2000. Hong
Kong SPCA architect Jill Cheshire did the design
work. Gail Cochrane, now operating an active
private practice in Hong Kong, began commuting
to Chengdu to supervise the bears’ veterinary
care.
By the December 2002 grand opening of the
China Bear Rescue Center, the Animals Asia
Foundation had already received 97 bears. The
facilities include a bear quarantine hospital
with upstairs volunteer quarters, indoor and
outdoor bear housing, an outdoor acclimation
habitat, visitor lodgings, and two enclosed
bamboo forests.
Much more is yet to be built or renovated
from the existing structures on the property, as
soon as Robinson can raise the funds.

Strategic debate

The sanctuary approach to the bile farm
bear issue has been vocally rejected by WSPA,
the same organization that instigated building
sanctuaries for former dancing bears.
The number of dancing bears may exceed
the present sanctuary capacity, but they can be
counted in the low hundreds. Capturing and
training more dancing bears is now illegal
virtually everywhere. Thus it can be hoped that
the last dancing bears can all be housed
comfortably for the rest of their lives.
Even Robinson admits that the Animals
Asia Foundation cannot save all of the bears who
are now on bile farms. Her belief is that by
saving some of them, and showing them to the
public as much as possible, both in China and
abroad, she can collapse demand for bile
products, ensuring that no more bears are
imprisoned.
A week before the China Bear Rescue
Center grand opening, WSPA director of wildlife
Victor Watkins hinted to London Sunday Times
Beijing correspondent Lynne O’Donnell that the
sanctuary might provide cover for expansion of
bile farming and bear poaching, by leading the
public to believe that bear bile production is
contracting.
Pressed by ANIMAL PEOPLE to support
Watkins’ argument, WSPA press aide Amanda Jones
shared an internal report about the November 2002
Convention on International Trade in Endangered
Species triennial meeting in Santiago, Chile.
“We had several meetings with Mr. Fan
Zhiyong, of the Chinese CITES Management
Authority (part of the State Forestry
Administration), in order to discuss the bear
farm and bear trade issues,” the WSPA report
stated. “We had been directed to speak with Mr.
Fan on these issues by a more senior member of
the Chinese delegation, Dr. Meng Xianlin (also of
the State Forestry Administration). On three
separate occasions, Mr. Fan stated that there
were now 9,000 bears on 167 farmsŠFan is the
Chinese official who produced the previous
official report (of which we have a copy), which
stated that there were 7,002 bears on 247 farms
in 1998. He said that if some farms were allowed
to trade internationally, then China could
satisfy the whole market in AsiaŠThis does
represent our worst fears,” the WSPA report
concluded.
Responded Robinson, “Dr. Fan’s
statements are not new. He has consistently
maintained over the years I have known him that
it is China’s intention to apply for
international trade in bear bile. To this date
they have not made any formal application.
“Chen Run Shen is secretary general of
the China Wildlife Conservation Association, a
department on equal seniority with the Beijing
CITES department and similarly part of the State
Forestry Administration.
“Chen Run Shen specifically advised us
during meetings in November and December 2002 in
Beijing that Dr. Fan is not the head of his
department and did not have the authority to
convey his personal thoughts on behalf of the
Central Government. He emphasized many times
that Dr. Fan was speaking from a personal
perspective.
“Chen Run Shen advised that the China
Wildlife Conservation Association was collating
figures for the number of bears on farms and
confirmed in the meantime that Sichuan Forestry
figures showed that the numbers of farmed bears
had been reduced in that province from a high of
2,700 bears to 2,300 today. This is the province
where our China Bear Rescue campaign is based.”
These are still the most recent official statistics.
While the Animals Asia Foundation accepts ever
more bears at the sanctuary, the current WSPA
anti-bile farm campaign consists of a traveling
puppet show, endorsed by celebrities, featuring
a bear puppet created by the Henson Group of
“Muppets” fame.
The China Bear Rescue Center is
attracting far more attention–including from
Chinese media, as ANIMAL PEOPLE saw.
As the China Bear Rescue Center grows,
Robinson hopes, it could draw tourists, who
come to Chengdu to see the pandas, then hear
about the bile farm bears and visit them too.
The People’s Republic economic and
strategic planners may discover that much as
saving pandas proved to be good business,
exhibiting ex-bile farm bears in happy conditions
may be worth more than the market value of the
bile now extracted from them.
There are bears to be freed in nearly every city.

–Merritt Clifton

Contacts:

Animals Asia Foundation, P.O. Box 374, General
Post Office, Hong Kong; 852-2791-2225; fax
852-279-2320; <info@-animalsasia.org>;
<www.animalsasia.org>.

Wildlife SOS c/o D-210 Defence Colony, New Delhi
110024, India; 91-11-24621939; fax:
91-11-24644231;
<karticksatyanarayan@hotmail.com>.

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