Ohio bears move to KOTA Territory - KOTA Territory News

Ohio bears move to KOTA Territory

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Meet the newest additions to Spearfish's Spirit of The Hills Wildlife Sanctuary.

"It's really a good thing for the bears because we can house them in a bigger area than they are used to and give them a more long lived home, a lifetime home," said volunteer, Reggie Hunt.

The five North American Black Bears were moved from a private owners home in Ohio after the state passed stricter legislation for those who own exotic animals.

"In this particular case a private owner owned these and wanted to make sure they went to somewhere proper, so they contacted a sanctuary that specialized in moving animals then we were contacted so we brought the animals here to give them a lifetime home,"said Hunt.

Since the bears have lived in captivity their whole lives they've become used to people which makes the move to this sanctuary an easy one.

"The sanctuary is a good fit because all the tours are guided tours and we don't let people harass our animals and what not so they will be able to be acclimated to people as they need to,"said Hunt.

Currently the black bears are in small pens, but once they get used to their surroundings they will be moved to a bigger one.

"we wanted them to feel more used to what they were used to in that sense before we gave them this vast area and we think that will keep them settled down,"said Hunt.

With better living conditions and a staff that cares, these bears will get the loving care they need.

"We don't plan to reintroduce these into the wild, they are domesticated bears and so we need to give them a proper lifelong home and that's what we definitely were able to offer them here,"said Hunt.

Bears that live in captivity generally live longer than those that live in the wild.

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