A yearling black bear has been reunited with its mother after a Yukon couple mistakenly believed it to be abandoned.
The couple was travelling from Stewart Crossing to Mayo when they encountered the cub about a kilometre east of Stewart Crossing.
The bear appeared to be alone in a roadside ditch and was crying out, the couple told Yukon Conservation Officer Kevin Johnstone.
After staying on the scene for 45 minutes, and with no sign of a sow, the couple lured the cub into their vehicle and brought it to local wildlife officials.
The bear was then cared for by conservation officers and observed for four days before being released back into the same area.
“He was underweight and undernourished but we fed him and whipped up some electrolytes,” Johnstone said.
Two weeks after being released the cub was spotted with a sow.
On occasion cubs will be orphaned when hunters accidentally shoot a sow or one is struck and killed by a vehicle, but Johnstone urged those who come across a young animal to leave it alone and report it to wildlife officials.
Last year, in the Whitehorse areas, there were 42 reported bear-human conflicts, with the vast majority of cases involving black bears.
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