If you’re a skeptic about bears and humans capable of having bonded relationships, this larger than life 1,400 pound Kodiak bear breaks all of the rules and delicately cuddles up to his best human in a viral photo and video of the two hugging and kissing. That special moment, caught on video by a staff member at the Orphaned Wildlife Center in Otisville, New York, can’t help but make one smile.
And now for Jimbo’s story. This Kodiak has a larger than life story when he stands on all fours; making him over nine feet tall. He is one of the oldest bears at the center, estimated to be about 20-years-old and gets along great with people. Jim Kowalczik, shown with Jimbo, has been working with the bear since he first arrived as a cub.
“Jimbo doesn’t do any performing or tricks. He has been with us since a cub – 21 years this month. He came from a situation where he was born in captivity and ended – had no skills to be released back into the wild,” has been posted on Facebook as the video continues to draw lots of smiles and ‘oohs and aahs.”
And if you’re wondering why the bears at the Orphaned Wildlife Center aren’t hibernating, it seems that captive bears just don’t. Although they do slow down a great deal and sleep most of the day, staff members explained, the bears also eat less. During the spring, summer and fall, Jimbo normally eats 30 pounds of food a day. In the winter he eats less than five pounds. His favorite food is red meat – thankfully he doesn’t see his caretakers as dinner.
Jimbo is the largest of the center’s 11 listed bears. The mission of the rescue is to “provide safety and nurturing to animals that are truly orphaned and prepare them to be return to a life in the wild.” Those who cannot make it on their own find Orphaned Wildlife Center as a sanctuary.
To help this organization, donations can be sent by following this link.
Photos and video of Jimbo the Kodiak bear courtesy of Orphaned Wildlife Center.
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