For most people, bears probably aren't high on the list of raft-mates. But ror Danny Allen, a guide of the Nolichucky River for High Mountain Expedition in North Carolina, an orphaned bear cub was a welcomed guest.
Without a mother, the cub — who was walking alongside the river — had little in the way of survival skills, and was quickly becoming malnourished and dehydrated. Rather than allow her to die, Allen brought the cub into his raft and brought her to safety.
The cub was named Noli, because she was found on the banks of the Nolichucky River.
Allen brought Noli to the Appalachian Bear Rescue (ABR), located just down the river in Tennessee.
Since entering the rescue center, 5-month-old Noli has made a quick turnaround.
No longer lethargic and nearing death, Noli is thriving at the ABR. Her health has rebounded, allowing wildlife officials to be optimistic about her future.
But was taking the bear from the wild the right thing to do?
Many people find baby animals—bunnies and baby deer in particular—and decide that they've been abandoned because they don't see the mother around. Some mothers in the animal kingdom will keep their babies hidden while they take off for the day. This actually draws the attention of predators away from the defenseless newborns.
A small animal who is not visibly injured should be left alone, though anyone who is unsure should call local wildlife rescue centers for guidance. It is important to remember that the mother of the baby animal will always do a superior job of raising the offspring than humans ever could, so it is critically important not to intervene until absolutely necessary.
However, Allen and other guides kept tabs on Noli for four days before the rescue, making sure that the mother bear really wasn't in the picture and that Noli really did need help.
During this time, Noli's condition did not improve. She remained malnourished and in desperate need of care. With no other options, Allen stepped in, collecting Noli into his raft to take her to her new temporary home.
This rescue gave Noli a new lease on life.
Once Noli is rehabilitated and old enough, she'll be released back into the wild to live out the rest of her days happy and free.
Be sure to share this heartwarming story with your friends. Click below now.
[H/T: Huffington Post]
[Images via: Facebook]