Orphaned cubs arrive home forever in Devon Wildlife Park


For the first time in its history, a wildlife park in Devon has welcomed two Eurasian brown bear cubs rescued from the Albanian mountains.

Wildwood Escot near Ottery St Mary welcomes cubs Mish and Lucy to their new home after a temporary stay at the Trust’s sister park in Kent.

The couple, who were rescued from certain death in the Albanian mountains in 2019, will be able to enjoy many enrichments in their new home, trees to climb and dens to dig, clods, fallen trees, toys and rope challenges. , and daily food scavenger hunts.

In the coming weeks, visitors will also be able to book a “Bear Experience”, which will give them a unique opportunity to meet and learn all about bears with exclusive behind-the-scenes access.

Wildwood Escot General Manager George Hyde said: “We couldn’t be happier to have Mish and Lucy here after all this time.

“These will be the first bears we have ever had in the park and we have created a fantastic house in the woods for them to explore and grow.

“Lucy and Mish had a very rough start in life but really thrived under the care of our expert caretakers in Kent.

“We look forward to continuing the great rehabilitation work that the team has already started.

“We are also very happy to be able to offer park visitors a unique chance to see bears up close and learn all about them.

“They can even scatter food, before they meet the bears and give them a treat.”

Paul Whitfield, Managing Director of Wildwood Trust, said: “All of the bears we deal with in Wildwood have been rescued, as have Lucy and Mish who just couldn’t survive in the wild.

“Their journey is extraordinary, but they are not alone.

“They represent the struggle of wildlife to exist in its natural habitats in the face of climatic and natural crisis.

“We will give these cubs the best possible life despite their sad departure.”

“We hope that one day species such as lynx, wolves and potentially brown bears will be reintroduced to wild places in Britain, thanks to the idea of ​​rewilding.”

Orphan bears will begin their lives in Escot as the finishing touches are added to their eternal home through the beautiful forests and meadows of Devon – the equivalent of around 1.5 football pitches.

These were designed to provide them with plenty of opportunities to explore, play and feed under the watchful eye of the charity’s team of animal experts, all of the behaviors they would have learned in nature.

Wildwood Trust appealed to raise £ 250,000 to build a new woodland bear sanctuary and transport the bears safely to Britain where they resided in Trust’s Kent Park until their home in Escot be ready.

Vital funds are still needed to complete the eternal home of the bear.

Donations can be made on the campaign website or by calling the donation hotline 01227 712111.

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