Spectacled Bear (Tremarctos ornatus)
- Also known as the Andean Bear.
- One of the world’s rarest species, it lives in South America.
- Under severe threat from hunting and habitat destruction.
- Often killed by farmers who see them as pests.
- It is thought there may be less than 10,000 left in the wild.
- They are very shy bears and stay away from humans.
- A spectacled bear mother has the ability to run on three legs whilst holding a young bear cub she is protecting.
- Their lifespan in the wild is uncertain.
- Most Andean bears have cream coloured markings that often encircle their eyes, which gives rise to the name ‘Spectacled’ bear.
- They spend a considerable amount of time feeding and resting in trees.
- They usually produce one or two cubs, although litters of three to four have been recorded in the wild. The cubs stay with their mothers for around 18 months.
- CITES Appendix 1.