Andean bear Appeal

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Andean bear cub Ronald Wittek Shutterstock com

An Andean or spectacled bear cub

Andean bears, made famous by our own Paddington bear, are the only bears native to South America. They are also known as spectacled bears. These beautiful animals live in the cloud forests of the Tropical Andes, the world’s most biologically diverse hotspot. But cloud forest is disappearing quickly due to agriculture, logging and mining. This is disastrous for the bears, who need a lot of forest to roam. The forest is vulnerable to climate change. Some bears are deliberately killed; sometimes by farmers protecting crops or cattle, others for supposed medicinal benefits. We’re likely to lose a third of the remaining Andean bears over the next decade. We must stop this.

We’re raising funds to protect the bears in the Neblina Reserve, a protected cloud forest on the slopes of the Andes owned by Rainforest Concern. It lies between two much larger protected forests, forming an essential but very narrow connected corridor between them. Without this vital corridor, the bear population would be split into areas too small for them to thrive.

Setting camera traps

Setting up camera traps to monitor the bears

Your support will help us

• run workshops with local villagers, changing behaviours and raising awareness of the importance of cloud forest and Andean bears.

• employ forest guards to carry out additional patrols of the forest and help them safely counter human threats whilst on patrol.

• install camera traps to monitor the bears, finding out how many there are, what pathways they use and how far they roam.

• support Rainforest Concern buy and legally protect a further key area of land to increase the size of the reserve and enhance its ability to support wildlife.

Will you help us protect bears and their cloud forest in the Andes?

 

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