Orphaned polar bear cub that loved to cuddle workers at an Arctic gold mine is rescued


Orphaned polar bear cub that loved to cuddle workers at an Arctic gold mine is rescued after it was found pining alone and waiting to be fed when their facility closed down

  • The bear was left alone on the Russian island of Bolsehvik when its mother died 
  • It was attracted to the smell of cooking at the gold mine, and begged to be fed
  • Miners broke no feeding rules and cared for the orphaned bear, taming her 
  • They organised a rescue mission after returning to mainland Russia
  • The bear was taken to Moscow hospital and will not be returned to the wild 

A rescue mission has saved the life of an orphaned polar bear tamed ‘like a dog’ by gold miners in the Arctic.

The cub on the remote Russian island of Bolshevik had been left all alone when its mother died. 

The hungry little beast was attracted by the smell of cooking at a gold mine, and begged to be fed.

Over several months, the wild animal became tame as miners cared for her, saving her life, even though strict rules forbid the feeding of endangered polar bears because doing so means they lose the ability to hunt.

Footage of the bear shows her climbing a ladder at the facility in the Severnaya Zemlya archipelago high in the Arctic, before jumping up to bear hug one of the miners. 

A rescue mission has saved the life of an orphaned polar bear tamed 'like a dog' by gold miners in the Arctic

Footage of the bear shows her jumping up to bear hug one of the miners

Footage of the bear shows her jumping up to bear hug one of the miners

A rescue mission has saved the life of an orphaned polar bear tamed ‘like a dog’ by gold miners in the Arctic. Footage of the bear shows her jumping up to bear hug one of the miners

The cub on the remote Russian island of Bolshevik had been left all alone when its mother died

The cub on the remote Russian island of Bolshevik had been left all alone when its mother died

The cub on the remote Russian island of Bolshevik had been left all alone when its mother died

The hungry little beast was attracted by the smell of cooking at a gold mine, and begged to be fed

The hungry little beast was attracted by the smell of cooking at a gold mine, and begged to be fed

The hungry little beast was attracted by the smell of cooking at a gold mine, and begged to be fed

‘The female cub spent several months living close to humans, and got so used to them that it behaved like a dog,’ said a report.

But then, the miners’ contract came to an end and it was time for them to return to the mainland.

Andrey Gorban, 56, director of Royev Ruchei Zoo in Krasnoyarsk, who spearheaded the rescue bid, said: ‘The workers could only get in touch with us at the end of their work stint, as they had no communication link at the base.

‘We were told that the men were leaving back to the mainland, and the cub had stayed there alone.

‘Our only hope was that they left quite a big open rubbish site, so there was a chance that the cub could feed off it for weeks.’

The video shows the orphaned polar bear climbing a ladder at the facility in the Severnaya Zemlya archipelago high in the Arctic

The video shows the orphaned polar bear climbing a ladder at the facility in the Severnaya Zemlya archipelago high in the Arctic

The video shows the orphaned polar bear climbing a ladder at the facility in the Severnaya Zemlya archipelago high in the Arctic

The forlorn bear is apparently looking for the gold miner workers, who had left the island at the end of their shift

The forlorn bear is apparently looking for the gold miner workers, who had left the island at the end of their shift

The workers returned, however, after organising a rescue mission for the orphaned cub

The workers returned, however, after organising a rescue mission for the orphaned cub

The forlorn bear is apparently looking for the gold miner workers, who had left the island at the end of their shift. The workers returned, however, after organising a rescue mission for the orphaned cub

With the help of Moscow Zoo, a decision was taken to launch a mission to save the tame bear.

A helicopter was flown to Bolshevik island, and the bear was found at the site pining after the missing gold miners.

The animal is now en route to Moscow Zoo where it will undergo quarantine before a decision is taken on where to permanently home it. 

Over several months, the wild animal became tame as miners cared for her, saving her life, even though strict rules forbid the feeding of endangered polar bears because doing so means they lose the ability to hunt

Over several months, the wild animal became tame as miners cared for her, saving her life, even though strict rules forbid the feeding of endangered polar bears because doing so means they lose the ability to hunt

Over several months, the wild animal became tame as miners cared for her, saving her life, even though strict rules forbid the feeding of endangered polar bears because doing so means they lose the ability to hunt

The bear will not be reintroduced to the wild because she has had too much contact with humans, and would not survive.

Gorban praised the miners even though they broke the no feeding rule.

The cub was lost and helpless without its mother, he made clear.

‘For right or wrong, they fed the endangered animal and through that tamed it,’ he said.

‘The shift workers saved its life, the cub had no chance to survive.’

The bear will not be reintroduced to the wild because she has had too much contact with humans, and would not survive

The bear will not be reintroduced to the wild because she has had too much contact with humans, and would not survive

The bear will not be reintroduced to the wild because she has had too much contact with humans, and would not survive



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