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FLEUR LOVES HER SERENE SOLITUDE

Fleur is a sun bear who started her journey with the BOS Foundation at the Nyaru Menteng Rehabilitation Centre. However, on May 8, 2018, was transferred to more sun bear-appropriate facilities at the Samboja Lestari Rehabilitation Centre alongside of six other sun bears, including Wiwin, Christy, Haq, Sibear, Denny, and India. Right away, Fleur was placed in the training enclosure at the Samboja Lestari Sun Bear Sanctuary. This location was chosen for her as it only houses one bear at a time and Fleur has a history of hostility and aggression towards other sun bears.

Most of the enclosures at Samboja Lestari are designed to house small groups of bears to give them as much space to explore as possible, despite the size limitations of the sanctuary. With this in mind, our technicians observed Fleur continuously and attempted to socialise her with another sun bear, Paul. Initially, the meeting of these two sun bears appeared to be progressing smoothly, with no fights occurring despite the limited size of the complex. However, over time, both bears grew stressed and a fight broke out. After that, the risk of serious injury, or even death, was just too high and Paul and Fleur had to be separated.

Following Paul, our technicians attempted to socialise Fleur with another sun bear named Feri. This was not meant to be either. Another brawl broke out and Feri had to be moved to avoid further trouble. Our animal welfare team determined that Fleur could no longer be integrated with the other sun bears. 

Fleur is currently occupying Training Complex #1. Another sun bear named Bernard lives next door. They take turns exploring the yard and playing on the platforms as they cannot adventure together without a fight erupting. Both appear to be content as amicable neighbours and nothing more.

In the wild, where space is plentiful, sun bears enjoy solitary lives. Excluding mothers and their children, they explore the forests and forage alone naturally. Fleur enjoys her solitary existence just like her wild counterparts. During meals, she does not have to compete with others and consumes everything offered to her. She also finds joy in the enrichment offered daily by our technicians, which can include anything from ice blocks and ulin logs to sacks and branches stuffed with tasty and nutritious food items.

Even though Fleur has gained a reputation at Samboja for being the most aggressive of the bears, she is always eager to explore and makes the most of her environment. You just keep on doing you, Fleur! 

Text by: Communications Team at Samboja Lestari, East Kalimantan

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