SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. (KTXL) — A wildlife center in South Lake Tahoe got a glimpse of hope in their search for a lost and injured bear cub that escaped earlier this week.
Thursday, Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care posted a pixelated photograph taken by some hikers. It shows a tiny black bear in a tree with what appears to be light-colored bandages on its paws.
Officials said the bear is “Tamarack,” whose nickname comes from the wildfire that burned his paws.
“This photograph is encouraging for a couple of reasons. He is alive,” Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care wrote in their post. “Clearly it illustrates that he is able to climb trees, which is his natural safety mechanism, and he remains in the South Lake Tahoe area.”
The center did not disclose the location of the sighting out of fear the cub may be scared off.
The 6-month-old black bear escaped from his enclosure Tuesday by tunneling under an electric fence, the center said.
Now, wildlife officials fear he is in danger due to his age and small size.
Officials are asking the public to keep an eye out for the bear in the Heavenly Valley ski resort, Black Bart and Sierra Tract neighborhoods. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife and local law enforcement are also helping search for him.
Anyone who sees the bear has been asked to keep their distance and immediately call the wildlife center at 530-577-2273.