After the horrors of earlier today, this little slice of heaven brought to you by the Facebook stream of one Diana Stout. By the time these li’l’ guys grow up, the #beararmy will be in the process of conquering the world. Right, guys?! Don’t worry, bear buddies, we’re always recruiting, at all ages.


New York has Yoga for Bears! Yes, really!  »

Animals Asia is a prime source of my bear news, so I’m pleased to inform you of an awesome-sounding New York event: Yoga for Bears!

Yeah, I said it. Unfortunately, it’s not what you’re thinking: Yoga for Bears does not feature bears doing yoga, but it’s the next best thing. The event kicks off with a full-length yoga class for all levels, followed by vegan lunch, and a talk and Q&A with Animals Asia. You’ll leave with all sorts of knowledge about how to get involved with Animals Asia and a rad T-shirt. Worth the $50 ticket price? I think so, especially since flexibility is a highly desired trait among soldiers in the bear army.

Yoga for Bears takes place at the Jivamukti Yoga School in New York City on Sunday, April 15, from noon to 3:30 p.m. Register here!


Yao Ming visits bears! Worlds collide!  »

Dating an NBA fanboy has its perks: I know who Yao Ming is! He’s a 7’6” kid who came from China to America with a simple dream: Make millions playing professional basketball. He did that and more — Yao went to the NBA playoffs four times with the Houston Rockets, among other accomplishments, before he retired last year.

I know what you’re thinking: Why is this relevant, Sarah? Well, our friend Yao, a WildAid ambassador, went to visit some bears rescued from bile farms at the Animals Asia sanctuary in Chengdu, China. He even petted Belton Kleberg (how’s that for a stately bear name?), a three-legged bear who had been illegally trapped in the wild before ending up on a bile farm and undergoing the "free drip" method of bile extraction—he got a little bear manicure from Yao during a health check. Yao  also visited bears at the fence line, and the graveyard (cue all the tears of baby Jesus).

Pretty rad, Yao! Your visit will hopefully make people more aware of the bile bear’s plight and join the bear army. Let’s get this shit trending on Twitter, by the way: #beararmy


Grizzlies make a comeback! Go bears!  »

Christ, you guys: BEARS. You know I’m on bears like white on the Republican Party, so let me advise you of some bodacious bear news in between bouts of holiday anxiety: A court has reversed the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s 2007 decision to remove grizzly bears from the endangered species list.

I have two dominant feelings about this news: 1. SAY WHAT, USFWS? Just because grizzlies got it on sufficiently and maybe got killed less to surpass your recovery goal of 500 bears in Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming in the past 30 years doesn’t mean that you can ignore climate change’s affect on the bear population’s health, as conservationists and the Greater Yellowstone Coalition (successfully) argued. 2. HOORAY! The three judges of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals took into account the decline in the population of whitebark pines, whose nuts are a major source of food for grizzlies to increase their fat reserves before hibernation. Bears love deez nuts! I bet they make a mean pesto with ‘em!

[Photo by Barbara Miers via Flickr]


Mo’ money, mo’ problems, except when it comes to polar bears, Canada says!  »

Some researchers asked Canadians how much money they’d be willing to cough up to save the Arctic Circle’s bad-ass polar bears, and all told, it equalled $6.3 billion. Since there are only 15,000 polar bears left in existence, that equals out to about $450,000 per bear! Each Canadian household would pay an average of $508 toward polar bear conservation.

Apparently we have the bears’ intrinsic cuteness as well as Coca-Cola advertising partially to thank, but who cares what gets people motivated to save the planet—especially the bears? Polar bears are rad! Can we appropriate some of that hypothetical money? This bear army needs cash to get moving!

[photo by Will Keightley via Flickr]


Find your vegan shit here, folks!  »

Sometimes Google doesn’t have all the answers. I know, I know; I can hardly believe it, but it’s true. I learned this when I Googled “vegan turkey Thanksgiving” and got a bunch of stupid HuffPo articles about how veg turkeys were not as good for eating as real ones.

Luckily, VegListings, a new business with a cute little site, might be able to help me out with that — and other vegan searches, such as those for shoes, restaurants, naturopaths, and more.

And if you own a veg business, you’re in luck because VegListings doesn’t charge for a listing in its directory. Seriously, do it, because it’s looking a little sparse.

This is a compassionate endeavor: When you support vegan businesses, it creates what I’d like to call “the financial circle of vegan,” in which the proprietors of vegan businesses take their earnings and in turn spend them on other vegan businesses, and so on until the bears rise up and take over the world.


Circuses suck even after the animals retire!  »

This is so sad: Katya, a 36-year-old bear who performed at the 1980 Moscow Olympics, is confined to a small, rusty cage on a nasty-ass bus parked on the outskirts of St. Petersburg, Russia, along with dozens of other retired circus animals.

We won the Cold War, but this is straight-up cold. As your Senior Bear Correspondent, I am appalled by injustices to bears, who are one of nature’s finest, most powerful, and cutest-when-young creations. Since the Dow is crashing and the world is ending, the bear army is gonna rise up any day now, and THEN WON’T YOU BE SORRY.

[photo by Dmitry Lovetsky, AP]

(Source: The Huffington Post)


Bear Awareness Week: Finally, some good news for sun bears!  »

Back in the heady days of 2008, the Wildlife Alliance's Wildlife Rapid Rescue Team (does this also make you think of the Superfriends?) program saved two Malayan sun bears from traders. Named Sopheap and Sloat (um, what? they should have been named Awesome and Awesomer!), they’ve been rehabilitated and might get to return to the wild!

Earlier this month, the bears went on a field trip through their native Cambodian countryside as the first step in a long, arduous, unprecedented process to start returning rehabbed bears in Free the Bears' Phnom Tamao facility to protected forests. In case you're tempted to Google “sun bear,” I'll save you the trouble: They're the smallest and least well known of the bears, and are primarily found in Southeast Asia's tropical rainforests. Their tongues are also longer than Gene Simmons’. Facts!

Hooray for sun bears going home! Don’t they have the coolest chest pattern? Answer: YES.


Did I mention it’s National Bear Awareness Week? Let’s get PUMPED with this awesome video of polar bears from BBC Planet Earth. If you’ve got money, consider donating to Polar Bears International to help save this endangered species. BEAR WEEK.

More Bear Awareness Week madness courtesy of Three Word Phrase. Poor bear, nobody understands him (or her! I’m just as pro-equality as the next guy—or girl! I swear!).

More Bear Awareness Week madness courtesy of Three Word Phrase. Poor bear, nobody understands him (or her! I’m just as pro-equality as the next guy—or girl! I swear!).

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