Sheffield & South Yorkshire

Yorkshire Wildlife Park gets second polar bear

Pixel the polar bear Image copyright yorkshire wildlife park
Image caption Pixel arrived in Doncaster after a road and sea trip from Eindhoven in the Netherlands

A second polar bear has arrived at a wildlife park in South Yorkshire.

Two-year-old Pixel will join Yorkshire Wildlife Park's other polar bear, 16-year-old Victor, who has been there since August.

Pixel came to the park near Doncaster from a zoo near Eindhoven in the Netherlands. He was driven in a special transporter to Rotterdam yesterday, then an overnight ferry to Hull.

The park said Pixel may one day be part of the European Breeding Programme.

Yorkshire Wildlife Park, which is at Branton near Doncaster, is in talks about rescuing another polar bear called Yupi from a Mexican zoo.

Image copyright PA
Image caption Victor and Pixel will live in a 10-acre reserve with landscaped hills, valleys and pools

Polar Bears

•Five nations have polar bear populations: the United States, Canada, Russia, Greenland, and Norway.

•Adult male polar bears can weigh up to 1,200lbs (550kg), while adult females may weigh as much as 650lbs (290kg)

•Biologists estimate there are 20,000 to 25,000 bears left in the wild

•Source: Polar Bears International


Image copyright PA
Image caption Victor and Pixel are the only polar bears in England. Highland Wildlife Park in Scotland also has two male polar bears - Victoria and Arktos
Image copyright PA
Image caption Animal development manager Simon Marsh said: "Polar bears are increasingly threatened in their native habitat and we need to fight their cause - their native sea ice is disappearing due to climate change."
Image copyright PA
Image caption The enclosure includes an eight-metre deep lake so the animals can swim and dive

Animal development manager Simon Marsh said: "It is vital that we understand how to care for these bears appropriately in captivity and provide for their needs.

"We are sure that Pixel will enjoy his new surroundings as much as Victor has."

The park said Victor was immediately on guard when he realised another polar bear was at the enclosure, but settled down "after a roar or two".

The bears will be introduced to each other once Pixel has settled in.

Pixel is about a third of the size of Victor, who weighs 480kg (1,058lb).

Yorkshire Wildlife Park rescued 13 lions from Romania in 2010.

Image copyright yorkshire wildlife park
Image caption Polar bears are increasingly threatened in their native habitat because sea ice is disappearing
Image copyright yorkshire wildlife park
Image caption The reserve is intended to provide a stimulating environment for the bears

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