Yorkshire Wildlife Park (YWP) in Doncaster are planning to rescue a Polar Bear that is currently housed in a Mexican Zoo.
Parque Zoológico Benito Juárez, in Morelia, Mexico, claims is doing all it can for Yupi, a 22 year old female Polar Bear, but her enclosure is entirely unacceptable. Though to be fair captivity is a bad place for a Polar Bear after a life of captivity a change of venue is the best chance for Yupi.
Yupi has been in this zoo since 1992, after being captured from the wild as a cub in Alaska. Information of how this came about is vague but it is understood her mother was shot either by hunters or by someone whose home where she was considered a potential risk.
YWP is raising funds in an attempt to bring Yupi to a much more appropriate climate. Granted Yorkshire is hardly the Polar Icecap (though nearby Sheffield is home to the Arctic Monkeys) Britain gives at least more of an acceptable seasonal variation than Mexico. Summers here are never as hot and Winter is quite acceptable for the great white bear.
The Sunday Mirror is backing this, now I don’t usually put anything on this blog about tabloid newspapers but that’s not the point here. The point is helping an intelligent animal that is clearly in need of help. And the press coverage the paper brings can only make Yupi’s chances of finding a more acceptable home much more likely.
YWP are attempting to raise £150,000 to build a suitable Polar Bear enclosure on a 10 acre site.
This plan isn’t just for Yupi. They also hope to house male Polar Bears who are no longer required in the international breeding program. This would free up valuable resources for the Zoos participating in the breeding program.
The enclosure, an artist’s impression below, will have a varied terrain.
There will be four sections all with sculpted rock formations. There will be streams,waterfalls and a lake as well as grass, herbs, shrubs and heathers. This will be a reasonable substitute for their natural environment and help encourage natural behaviour such as foraging.
Donations to this cause can be made through My Donate, UK Taxpayers can of course choose to Gift Aid any donations adding an extra 28% to their donation.
There is much more information available about Yupi’s personal plight on the Save Yupi site. Obnviously there is more about YWP’s plans on their site.