POLITICS

Rare spirit bear bolts from Kamloops sanctuary just weeks after arrival

10/31/2012 08:55 EDT | Updated 12/31/2012 05:12 EST
KAMLOOPS, B.C. - An 18-month-old Kermode bear cub, believed to be the first white spirit bear in captivity, appears to be having second thoughts about its association with humans.

The cub, dubbed Clover, carries the rare genetic trait that turns its fur creamy white, so when it was found orphaned in northern B.C., it was carefully rehabilitated and released, in hopes it would join the fewer than 1,000 other spirit bears on B.C.'s north and central coasts.

But the male cub never strayed far from humans and, just weeks ago, was trapped and relocated to a wildlife sanctuary in Kamloops, B.C.

Trouble is, Clover is a rover, and the 70 kilogram bear wasted little time in breaking out of its enclosure and heading for the hills.

It was tracked, tranquilized and recaptured late Tuesday morning and has now been returned to the B.C. Wildlife Park.

Officials at the Southern Interior park were already making plans to build a new enclosure for Clover, but now they know those plans will have to include measures to keep the brainy bruin from bolting, again. (CHNL)