The Bornean Sun Bear Conservation Centre (BSBCC) is home to two sun bear cubs whose friendship is just about the sweetest thing you will ever see. Nano and Noah, the little bears in question, are orphans who were ripped away from their mothers and set to be sold as pets. Thankfully, they were rescued from the illegal pet trade in 2016 and are finally being given the shot they deserve to be normal cubs.

After the rescue, the little bears were in a sad condition. Nano was very stressed by the ordeal, he was shy and did not trust the people. Noah was in a lot of pain as his milk canines had been crushed off – perhaps to make him easier to sell as a docile “pet.”

Luckily, that is all in the past for the bears now. Once they arrived at the sanctuary, they were moved to roomy dens filled with natural enrichments, like dead wood, climbing structures, and heaps of dry leaves – things that remind them of their natural home. They will help them get used to what ultimately will be their surroundings when they are ready to be released back into the wild.

The move was truly exciting for the bears – they loved exploring their new home, climbing on the boughs, and grabbing everything that was in their reach. Noah proved to be full of curiosity and willing to play. He was even very persuasive in convincing the more cautious Nano to join in!

The two bears have a relationship that is wonderful to watch – Noah, being a “natural leader,” encourages Nano to be brave and try new things. He regularly starts play fights between the two, pushing Nano and inviting him to play. They surely never get bored together!

The fights may seem a little over the top, but they are all play and a part of the necessary process for growing bears.

It is lovely to see those two orphaned bears, who just a few months ago were frightened and shied away from everything, play around and have such great company in each other.

Sharing the space, wrestling, and foraging for food, the bears are growing stronger, more confident, and happier every day!


Fortunately, the horrific days of life in the illegal pet trade are over for these two, all thanks to BSBCC’s hard work. This unique organization is at the forefront of sun bear rescue and rehabilitation – something that is sorely needed considering all the challenges these bears fact in the wild. While Nano and Noah were saved from the illegal pet trade, sun bears are also the frequent targets of the cruel bear bile trade. We hope with enough time, both of these playful cubs will be able to return to their wild home.

To learn more about BSBCC and their work, click here.