Polar bear cub saved five years ago happy with people

Polar bear cub saved five years ago happy with people

20 January 2015

Five years ago, the WWF Polar Bear Patrol saved a polar bear cub on Ayon Island off Chukotka in Russia’s Far East. His mother may have been killed by poachers or he got lost in a winter storm.


The patrol named the cub Ayon. A zoo was his only chance, but while preparations for transport were being taken care of, the cub grew accustomed to people because he lived for a week in the apartment of a caretaker.


Ayon has been living in the Volokolamsk breeding centre of the Moscow Zoo for five years, but he has not forgotten people and likes them. The WWF monitored his life for the first year after he moved to Volokolamsk, and members of the WWF Polar Bear Patrol continue to visit him often.


On 19 January, Ayon had a fifth birthday party. His “guests” brought him toys, but the best present was seal blubber, the best titbit for polar bears. It came from Ayon’s friends in Arkhangelsk, a polar city in European Russia.


Ayon has a mate and will hopefully have cubs.