The two young females now keep company with Kiwi, the bear in Jean-Jacques Annaud’s film.
La marseillaise à pétanque 2022, 61st edition of the world
From a distance, they look like stuffed animals. Big stuffed animals weighing 70 kilos. Betlsa and Beija, two eighteen-month-old cubs from Boras Zoo in Sweden, arrived at the park in early June Zoodyssey of Chizé (Deux-Sèvres).
The two sisters have joined the star of the place in their enclosure. The 36-year-old Kiwi bear, world famous for her participation in Jean-Jacques-Annaud’s film, had felt very lonely there since the death of her companion Dominique last spring.
Between the three females, the cohabitation is going well. “It took a little getting used to at first, they sniffed each other, but there was no negative physical relationship” explains Marion Lutan, animal manager at the park. Bear friends as a pig then? Almost.
There have been small charges of intimidation from time to time, but it’s still very decent and they get along pretty well.Marion Lutan, zoodyssée animal manager
With this reinforcement from the Far North, the Deux-Sévrien animal park now has three specimens of brown bear, a flagship species that is very popular with visitors, fewer in number since the covid.
And in fact, many of them rave about these new residents “super cute” and “adorable”. “They even have a small waterfall, they look beneze” cmentions a mother who came from Celle-sur-Belle with her little boy.
It must be said that for them, the animal park has specially fitted out a space of 7,000 m2 in which the plantigrades seem perfectly at ease. “They climb trees, it’s pretty cool to watch” explains Marion Lutan, “we also see them swimming in the basin, and looking for their food”.
Because, to keep their plantigrade instincts on the alert, the healers hide their meal under stones, or spread jam on the tree trunks. “The goal is to make them look, and that will keep them busy for a good part of the day” comments Corentin Nivard, one of the caretakers of the park.
Report by Alain Darrigrand, Éléa Tymen and Bénédicte Biraud.